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Who doses what?

What do you dose?

  • ADA

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • EI

    Votes: 8 57.1%
  • PMDD

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • TPN+ exclusively

    Votes: 5 35.7%
  • Off the shelf All-In-One

    Votes: 1 7.1%
  • Other, please state and i'll update the poll if necessary

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    14

Graeme Edwards

Founder
Joined
21 Jun 2007
Messages
1,161
Location
Wirral/Chester Cheshire.
Tropica N+, only because I won a shed load in the PFK aquascaping compotion. I have enought o last a life time.

Lisa, save your money for when you come and visit TGM, they have the full range of Tropica stock and are doing a special days discount on it for us Ukaps members.
Its dead easy to use and yealds great results IMO, :eek:)

Cheers.
 

Aeropars

Member
Joined
9 Jul 2007
Messages
792
Location
Leicester
I've used EI but didnt like the water changes since i am away a lot of weekends.

I'm about to give the PPS pro tyle solution a go although I'm curious about the Tropica clone on James' website. Dosing pre made ferts just get too damn expensive for my liking.
 

plantbrain

Expert
Joined
2 Aug 2007
Messages
1,946
Aeropars said:
I've used EI but didnt like the water changes since i am away a lot of weekends.

I'm about to give the PPS pro tyle solution a go although I'm curious about the Tropica clone on James' website. Dosing pre made ferts just get too damn expensive for my liking.

Yep, that's why they came up with PMDD a 13 years ago.
If you want less work, use Excel or use non CO2 methods, then no testing nor no water changes.
Also, use sediment nutrients(ADA AS). I can easily go weeks without water changes even with sizable fish loads.

You just dose less and use the common sense approach which is pretty clear in EI's article.
It's just a starting point for non limiting levels, you can reduce them down, or change due to tap water etc.

Then you can easily get away with less water changes.
If you want a nice garden without work, plant choice and slowing the growth rate down is the key.

The best ways to do that: less light and perhaps going non CO2 or Excel(if you still want a water change here and there say once a month). This address the algae issues, the over growth issues and water change or testing issue.

No one dosing method can do that.
Do not place all th weight on a dosing routine.
The are other larger factors that can meet your goals and not cause more issues for you with you having even less work to do.
Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Aeropars

Member
Joined
9 Jul 2007
Messages
792
Location
Leicester
Its not that I dont want to to any water changes but with EI you have to be so strict on them otherwise you could be in a green mess! These other methods will supposedly give me a little more freedom. due to my work and weekend commitments i can sometimes do 2 water changes a fortnight then another time i can only get in 2 a month.
 

ceg4048

Expert/Global Moderator
UKAPS Team
Joined
11 Jul 2007
Messages
9,088
Location
Chicago, USA
Aeropars said:
Its not that I dont want to to any water changes but with EI you have to be so strict on them otherwise you could be in a green mess! These other methods will supposedly give me a little more freedom. due to my work and weekend commitments i can sometimes do 2 water changes a fortnight then another time i can only get in 2 a month.

This is not really an accurate assessment. If you cruise the planted tank websites you'll find no correlation between number of tanks experiencing "green mess" and the dosing method being used in that tank. Nutrients don't cause algae. Ammonia causes algae. If a tank is being dosed via EI it is more than likely that the tank is a high light tank. In a high light tank, if the organic waste is not managed properly, ammonia buildup plus light will trigger a bloom. Many people seem to be fixated on water changes as it relates to EI. In a high light tank water changes are a necessity regardless of the dosing method. As plantbrain says, if you want less water changes then simply lower your light. If you want less plant deterioration and less algae simply add more CO2/Excel.

Cheers,
 

Aeropars

Member
Joined
9 Jul 2007
Messages
792
Location
Leicester
I wouldn't say I have high light, not in comparison to some on here. I run 4 t8's over 180 litres. I was always taught that you need weekly water changes with EI. But then your saying if I did dose EI on a low light tank then I'm less likely to get algae?

Surely nutrients have to come into it because algae is also a plant lifeform, albeit an unwated one. I freshly cycled tank filled with tap water is more prone to algae blooms than a cycled tank filled with mainly RO water surely? I know that in my experience this was the case.
 

Ray

Member
Joined
31 Oct 2007
Messages
676
Location
Switzerland
Aeropars said:
Surely nutrients have to come into it because algae is also a plant lifeform, albeit an unwated one. I freshly cycled tank filled with tap water is more prone to algae blooms than a cycled tank filled with mainly RO water surely? I know that in my experience this was the case.

True but without the nutrients you can't grow plants either :wideyed: It is a big misconception that nutrients cause algae - people spent a lot of effort trying to dose just enough, measuring constantly, but EI throws that out the window and gets just as good results, if not better because there is more margin of error. You need to focus on avoiding the triggers that cause algae, namely:

Too much light for the CO2 present (= sick plants that release ammonia)
Nutrient deficiencies (=sick plants that release ammonia)
Ammonia spikes

For quite an in depth discussion on this try this thread here: http://www.ukaps.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=615&st=0&sk=t&sd=a&hilit=epiphany (quite long I'm afraid)
 

ceg4048

Expert/Global Moderator
UKAPS Team
Joined
11 Jul 2007
Messages
9,088
Location
Chicago, USA
Aeropars said:
Surely nutrients have to come into it because algae is also a plant lifeform, albeit an unwated one. I freshly cycled tank filled with tap water is more prone to algae blooms than a cycled tank filled with mainly RO water surely? I know that in my experience this was the case.

Hi,
No, not really. This is a common misconception which is primarily why there are so many tanks suffering algal blooms. Study this thread carefully: viewtopic.php?f=19&t=905

It's rather long winded but well worth the patience. You would be surprised to learn that in nature, freshwater algal blooms only appear in nutrient poor waters. It's important to be clear about the difference between inducing algae versus growing algae. The default mode of algae is in the form of spores, which, through various sensor mechanisms, monitor the condition of the environment. When the environment is favorable, the spores trigger a change and the bloom occurs. For algae, a favorable environment is one in which there is decay and pollution. Ironically, algae function as scavengers to actually clean up the environment by removing the products of decay characterized by high organic waste content and ammonia.

Once algae has been induced, then, yes they are opportunists and will feed voraciously on whatever nutrients are available in the environment. In a poorly managed tank algae is induced by the ammonia produced by organic waste and then proliferates because of the nutrients present. This becomes an optical illusion as many assume that the nutrient levels caused the algae.

One of the main reasons a tank is at it's most vulnerable to algae attacks during setup is specifically due to the imbalance between ammonia and the population of other organisms which can feed on ammonia and thereby reduce it's concentration. This is the mechanism of the nitrogen cycle. When a tank is cycled the first product produce unsurprisingly is ammonia which is driven to high concentration levels until a specific population of bacteria can develop which feed on the ammonia and oxidize it to nitrite (NO2). The rise in ammonia in the presence of light triggers alga blooms. I can guarantee you 100% that this procedure occurs in exactly the same way whether the water is 100% RO or tap. RO water does nothing to stem the tide of ammonia buildup. If you experienced less blooms when using RO then there was some other factor or factors which led to less blooms. It cannot be attributed to RO water alone. There are so many variables in the ecology of a tank that it is easy to draw correlations between unassociated factors. You would have to review your entire management scheme and your procedures to compare between various tank setups.

It is specifically for this reason that in the first 6 to 8 weeks of a tank setup multiple and large water changes per week are critical to success. The water changes lowers the ammonia concentration thereby suppressing the algal trigger mechanism. After a few months the billions of bacteria required to stabilize the ammonia production in the tank develop and thus less frequent changes are required.

A low light tank lacks the dynamics of a high light tank specifically because of the low light. The metabolism of the plants is greatly reduced, the organic waste content is reduced and the plants ability to recycle organic waste is given enough time because the low light suppresses the algal trigger mechanism, even in the presence of ammonia. Therefore to answer your question, yes dosing EI on a low light tank results in less likelihood of algae. Of course, you would dose less since the plants would not need as much nutrients under low light conditions.

Hope this helps.

Cheers,
 

LondonDragon

Administrator
UKAPS Team
Joined
21 Feb 2008
Messages
11,258
Location
London
Nice reply Ceg, very informative, enjoied the read, glad I joined the forum ;)
I have never had an algae bloom or anything of the sort, guess the constant maintenance of the tank helps and balances things out.
 
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