Will HC grow in hard water?

Discussion in 'Plant Help' started by FishBeast, 4 Dec 2009.

  1. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

    Messages:
    264
    Location:
    Australia
    Hi guys, I have been having great difficulty growing my HC over the last 3 months... Everything appears to be good, my water circulation is good, my co2 is at 30ppm my ferts are good and my light is very high... My water quality is good but it seems to growing at about 1 millimetre a month.. The water here is hard at about 50 GH and I am wondering if this could be the reason...

    I am at my wits end here and could use your advice guys...
     
  2. Fred Dulley

    Fred Dulley Member

    Messages:
    512
    Location:
    Cardiff, Wales
    HC will grow fine in hard water. It couldn't really give a monkeys what the hardness was as long as it got enough CO2 and nutrients. HC loves NO3 and CO2, especially because you say you have high lighting. Make sure they are getting enough and that there is appropriate circulation towards the HC.
     
  3. chump54

    chump54 Member

    Messages:
    512
    Location:
    Thorington, suffolk
    I'm growing HC in my nano, with what I thought was hard water 28gh (according to the water supplier) :) I'm using easycarbo and no co2. it is slow going but looks good. as Fred said NO3 and co2 are important get the flow to the bottom, try your drop checker down by the hc and you could also try some liquid carbon too.

    but it can be slow to get going I believe. It might be about to take off!

    Chris
     
  4. CeeJay

    CeeJay Member

    Messages:
    945
    Location:
    Surrey UK
    Hi FishBeast.

    My experience of HC was it needs loads of CO2. Originally my CO2 levels were OK but my circulation was not and it suffered.
    I stuck another filter on the tank to supplement the original external filter and then the growth went nuts :thumbup:

    Chris.
     
  5. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

    Messages:
    8,267
    Location:
    nr Bath
    Hi all,
    I think it might be the water, the extreme alkalinity and very large amount of buffering may mean that one of the macro or micro-nutrients is unavailable to the plants, as it will have formed insoluble compound(s) as soon as it is added to the water. If this is the cases I'd suspect one of phosphorus (P), magnesium (Mg) or iron (Fe). A chelated source of P and Fe might help, but for magnesium the problem could be the Mg/Ca ratio, and I'm not sure what you can do about that.

    A slow release fertiliser or "Fritted trace elements and P" may be a possibility if added to the substrate.
    cheers Darrel
     
  6. Vito

    Vito Member

    Messages:
    528
    Location:
    Watford, Hertfordshire
    As everyone one has already said co2 is very important with HC, but balance is what you want for success, my advice would be to adjust one think at a time monitor over a week if it has no effect or worse then obviously its something else but you have to isolate which it is. I have the drop checker yellow, its not causing any harm to my livestock and I only have HC in my tank and it was suffering but I have adjusted the co2 to a bit lower as I think I was a bit over the top for my lighting and fert dosing regime.
    Also there could be a loss of co2 is there is too much water movement, also what equipment are you using for co2, pressurized or Diy? what type of diffuser and is it in the best possible location to ensure co2 is evenly distributed?
    Also ferts have to be spot on, are you using dry or liquid? if the ferts are good chances are its the co2.

    Vito
     
  7. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

    Messages:
    264
    Location:
    Australia
    I have pressurised co2 going into the inlet of my canister filter. My drop checker shows 30ppm and it is slightly yellow when I put it at the spot where my HC is. MY co2 kicks on 3 hrs before my lights come on and my drop checker begins to change colour after 1 hour of my lights being on.

    Here is a pic of how my water flow works...
    flowrate1.jpg

    I am running 312watts of t5 lighting... 8x6500k.. 39w. 8 hrs of 156w with a 6hr 156w burst in the middle. My water cycles 12xper/hr and I am fertilising via EI method with a measuring spoon.

    So naturally I am baffled at why I am having such difficulty growing this plant. I think i will have to up the dose of nitrogen. I don't think this will work though as for a fair while I thought tsp meant tablespoon and was dosing tablespoon doses of ferts into my tank... the HC didnt grow then either.
     
  8. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

    Messages:
    8,267
    Location:
    nr Bath
    Hi all,
    That's why I think it is a water hardness issue, it won't matter how much of the nutrient that is limiting growth, that you add if it is becoming insoluble and unavailable. Think of it like water and ice, you can have as much water as you like and keep on adding it, but if the temperature is below freezing it will all be ice, not water and you won't be able to drink it.
    cheers Darrel
     
  9. aaronnorth

    aaronnorth Member

    Messages:
    3,955
    Location:
    worksop, nottinghamshire

    My water is over 4x as hard as Fishbeasts - GH is 12d/ 215ppm and it grew like a weed.

    As do my other plants which dont suffer from any defficencies either :thumbup:

    As I said on TFF, try placing your DC at different places across the substrate to make sure CO2 is available at the corect level. :thumbup:

    thanks, Aaron
     
  10. Fred Dulley

    Fred Dulley Member

    Messages:
    512
    Location:
    Cardiff, Wales
    Nope.
    Try it. If the KNO3 is becoming insoluble then surely you will see precipitation?
     
  11. chump54

    chump54 Member

    Messages:
    512
    Location:
    Thorington, suffolk

    Hi Aaron, could you clarify your figures for me, I have water of 28 german hardness (which I think is essentially the same as general hardness according to wikipedia) which gives me in the region of 500ppm calcium carbonate, if Fishbeasts' water is 50GH i think that would give 892ppm which would make his/her water 4 times harder than yours? there are so many scales I'm confused.

    Chris
     
  12. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

    Messages:
    8,267
    Location:
    nr Bath
    Hi all,
    potassium nitrate (KNO3) will remain in solution as K+ NO3- ions right up to when the solution is fully saturated. That is why KNO3 is used in soluble fertilisers, you can make very concentrated stock solutions that you normally dilute 1:200 to use in hydroponics or as a liquid feed etc. You can add K and N until they reach toxic levels, but if it is another element that is limiting plant growth, there will be no effect from the increased levels (until toxic levels are reached).

    Iron (Fe) has to be oxidised and chelated in solutions above pH7 , or it forms insoluble iron phosphate compounds. The chelation only works because, although the in Fe EDTA is very tightly bound (it is the most tightly bound ion), it is photo-degraded and Fe then becomes available.

    Phosphorus also forms insoluble calcium phosphate compounds at pH above 7, and if you have a very large reservoir of calcium carbonate (really Ca 2+ ions present), phosphate may be the limiting nutrient as it will all rapidly become insoluble and unavailable.

    Magnesium may be available, but when the calcium magnesium ratio is very high, many plants find it difficult to uptake Mg, which is an important component of chlorophyll.

    Last but not least 50 degrees of hardness is very hard water, each degree of hardness is equivalent to 17.85 ppm of CaCO3, and anything above 30 degrees is "very hard" according to that unimpeachable source "wikipedia".

    cheers Darrel
     
  13. aaronnorth

    aaronnorth Member

    Messages:
    3,955
    Location:
    worksop, nottinghamshire
    Hi, fishbeasts is 50ppm (so he said on another forum) but if he has got mixed up then yes his water will be 4x harder than mine. It is easy mistake to do and can throw results/ theories way off as you & Darrel have pointed out above!

    We'll just have to wait for clarification.

    thanks, Aaron
     
  14. chump54

    chump54 Member

    Messages:
    512
    Location:
    Thorington, suffolk
    thanks Aaron, I thought i'd got the wrong end of the stick... :D

    and thanks Darrel, some interesting points there.

    Chris
     
  15. FishBeast

    FishBeast Member

    Messages:
    264
    Location:
    Australia
    Thanks guys, I will keep you posted
     

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