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Need help understanding my water levels...

Discussion in 'Water Chemistry' started by Cai1987, Nov 18, 2015.

  1. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Cai

    Just another check is it a DIY or a pressurized unit?

    I remember Roy saying he had a DIY and was constantly adjusting it until he bought a quality pressurized unit, and he is certainly not a beginner.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     

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  2. Cai1987

    Cai1987 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    No it's pressurised Keith,
    The initial setup of it though is a case of setting a initial rate, watching it and then tweaking if needed. Which mine needed. I need to be aiming for a 1unit drop in ph. Mine being 7.3/7.4- 6.3/6.4. I'm getting 6.5 at the lowest. I'm not prepared to go any more with co2 so il stay with that. My drop checker is light green at lights on and yellow at lights off.
    The plants are definitely growing however so I can't complain. The water has its faults granted but if the plants aren't too bothered then I'm not going to stress too much. I was just wanting to go extra yard with ei ferts within water.
     
  3. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    That is great.

    It solves a lot of problems.

    PM Roy he might be able to assist you in tweaking your unit he is in the UK as well.

    I think the plants will finally adjust just leave ever thing as it is at the moment .

    See if you can do any thing about your water supply as this seems to be the major concern.

    Finally the WWW is full of what could be called miss leading information and that is putting it very mildly.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  4. Cai1987

    Cai1987 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I've spoken to Roy abit and he has been very helpful with a lot of things. It's nice that someone with the knowledge actually wants to share it. There's a fair bit of I told you so's rather than here's how I can help. I know which category I aim to be in a few years down the line that's for sure!
     
  5. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Cai

    This is the place to learn the finer points there are members here only too willing to help you.

    All I would every ask in return is you pass on your knowledge where ever possible.

    A very old teachers saying teach it and you will learn a lot more, or if you don't know a subject teach it.

    Over the years I had to teach subjects I did not know or how to teach it Oh how fast do you learn even if its only one week ahead of the students.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  6. Cai1987

    Cai1987 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I will certainly pass on any solid information given for sure.
     
  7. Solcielo lawrencia

    Solcielo lawrencia Aspiring Aquascaper

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    The EI concept is extremely flawed. Understanding some basic chemistry will elucidate why. While dosing more macros will result in increased growth up to a point, most aquatic plants are not tolerant of excess traces. In fact, it appears that the reason for dosing such high concentration of macros is to limit the toxicity of the high concentrations of traces. How? Because excess anions (negatively charged molecules such as NO3, PO4) counteract the effect of cations (positively charged molecules such as Fe, Mn, Zn, Cu, etc.) This is termed the "anion effect". Phosphates can also bind with these cations which renders them inert, thus reducing the toxic concentrations.

    If you measured nutrient uptake, you'll realize that plants don't use much macros, and definitely not as much as EI suggested dosing. In my heavily planted tank, phosphate uptake is about 1ppm per week. So why is it necessary to dose 5-10ppm of PO4 per week? Because excess phosphate helps limit the effects of toxic concentrations of traces. By dosing excess traces, you must neutralize and limit it's toxic effects by dosing excess macros. This is why it's so important to alternate dosing macros and micros, because it's necessary to cancel out the effects of toxicity.

    Another thing to consider, since 1ppm of PO4 = 0.3ppm of P, why is it suggested that iron is dosed at a rate of 0.5ppm two times per week (or more)? Why dose more of the micro than the macro? Even hydroponics suggested dosing for iron, in which plants receive full sunlight and atmospheric concentrations of CO2, is less than than the suggested weekly dosing in EI. That's 2ppm of Fe once every three weeks for plants that are grown in air, not underwater, while EI suggests dosing 1ppm each week. There is something incredibly wrong here.

    Even the idea that a large WC at the end of the week is able to "reset" the tank false and not based in reality, as those who've had their water tested have shockingly realized, myself included.

    I've yet to see one EI-dosed tank that has plants that are 100% healthy. They've all showed some signs of toxicity. The tank owners have no idea that their plants are displaying toxic symptoms. They've grown so accustomed to seeing the symptoms that they think toxicity is normal.
     
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  8. Cai1987

    Cai1987 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Thank you for the msg @Solcielo lawrencia. It's a very in depth and wellpointed argument I will certainly have to sit and think about as in regards to which direction I go in now. Thank you for your time
     
  9. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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  10. Solcielo lawrencia

    Solcielo lawrencia Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Now that you've presented your problems a couple of times, and the responses are exactly as I predicted, why do you continue to believe it's a deficiency of some sort? What is so difficult about believing that a toxicity is occurring from dosing such high concentrations of micronutrients? When I presented the idea that it's a micro-tox, I'm attacked, even by the moderators on that forum. Even they cannot believe what I'm saying is true. When you realize that none of the advice they give can alleviate the problems in your plants, then what?
     
  11. Cai1987

    Cai1987 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    At the minute I'm following the majority due to my inexperience in the hobby. What In that is hard to see?
    Responses I'm given from scientists and professors respectively from that forum are all generally in agreement on things advised.
    I neither count there advise or yours any less. It's simply learning the way I see fit. I will try a method and only then discard it if I feel it hasn't aided. As I will with my current problem.
    If it comes down to it that it was toxicity then fine. I won't be embarrassed to admit or change that. Its not from heeding you or respecting your knowledge. I'm simply learning. Be it the hard way we shall see!
    If you believe strongly enough as you do to have a go at me, why don't you argue your case better on that said forum so that others may follow and hear what your saying in regards to toxicity. Debate it with evidence, studies etc with those that are passing the knowledge on. It's no good picking at the beginners. Set yourself up to them and make them listen if it's true.
    Cheers
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2016
  12. Cai1987

    Cai1987 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Also, as I understand it from the toxicity reading I have done. Dosing excess micros is a problem if we go chasing extra on for example iron. The said person will then add extra micro overall. This is what then causes the problems. They could instead add extra iron if it is the deficiency without going overboard on the other micro ingredients.
    Doing x2 water changes a week keeps levels from exploding off the chart in terms of toxicity. That's even from the argument that toxicity with micros are a problem.
    I don't believe it's so much ei fertilising is bad, as much it's because we see unhealthy growth. So we blast extra everything into the tank. I'm not doing it that way. I'm following the guided recipe for my tank. They say to not worry how much water is actually in tank as its estimative. However, I logged in 50ltrs of water Instead of going with 60ltrs to be on safe side. So I'm under dosing those values a little anyway.
    Also, plants toxicity is often hard to see like you say due to it being similar to a deficiency. On a study I read said:

    "Recognising nutrient deficiencies. In his "Introduction" that I mentioned and linked to above, Chuck Gadd points out that nutrient deficiencies tend to show up first and most vividly in fast-growing plants. The more unmistakable nutrient deficiencies tend to show up in new growth. Deficiencies that are manifested in mature growth, resulting when mobile nutrients in scarce supply are translocated to mature growth, are hard to interpret. In those cases it's easy for an amateur to be misled."

    "Non-mobile nutrients, which must stay where they are first laid down, include calcium and sulfur, which are built into plant structures and proteins, as well as various micronutrients used in plant metabolism, as catalysts or in chlorophyll, e.g. copper, iron, manganese, boron. These non-mobile nutrients can't be freed and redirected by the plant to where they are needed in new growth. So deficiencies in these instances will show at growing points and in the developing new leaves."
    It's my new growth that are showing signs of yellowing and glasslike growth. All old growth is fine.
    This is what leads me to believe I'm short in iron due to the high cations in my tap water which aren't allowing the iron to be freed up to plants. It's funnily occurring in my fast growers such as largely tennellus and rotala although in the bonsai type the top of plants do go a lighter tinge naturally. By tropicas images anyway.
    i have read and taken your points into consideration. It's just that I'm not just throwing random numbers in tank, with no water changes etc like others are. I'm trying my best to understand the elements going in. There's just a lot to take in at min. I do try to put some of your points across in conversation on my said topics. I get informed arguments back to counter yours. I can't just sit on fence, as in meantime my tank suffers either way. My general plants health is great, I feel anyway.
    Il try the iron solution for couple weeks, if that doesn't work then il stop and see what difference no fertilisers do. I've under calculated however to normal ei suggests by putting my exact water volume in to start with though.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2016
  13. Cai1987

    Cai1987 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    image.jpeg image.jpeg
    image.jpeg
    image.jpeg
    image.jpeg
    Here are a few images of my plants. I've added both the plants in doubts and overall health so there an overview to what I'm getting across the board.
     
  14. Solcielo lawrencia

    Solcielo lawrencia Aspiring Aquascaper

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    When I presented evidence, they dismissed it because it violated their paradigm that you can never cause toxicity with EI. As mentioned earlier, even the moderators trolled me, and sent me notices that I was violating forum rules when they were the ones attacking me, even when I didn't engage in their shenanigans. Attacking me, then sending me notices is trolling at the worst. When other members troll, I can dismiss it. But when moderators and admin troll, that's when I decided not to participate. Lastly, I'm not picking at you, but trying to tell you that the most oft cited causes of plant problems are incorrect. CO2 is not a panacea nor is dosing ridiculous amounts of fertz.

    If you measure the nutrient uptake, you'll quickly realize that they use only a small fraction of it. The rest is wasted. So why does adding more fertz seem to make plants grow better? Because high concentrations of macro fertz can minimize toxicity. How? High K+, Ca++, and Mg++ can crowd out metal cations, which helps prevent toxicity. High PO4- can cause precipitation which renders metals inert. If you follow this rationale, then you should realize that dosing high levels of macros is done for the purpose of minimizing toxicity of the micros, not because plants are deficient. When there's 50+ppm of potassium, and there are pinholes in the older leaves, is it really a potassium deficiency? When the new leaves are small, and there's 100+ppm of calcium, is it really a calcium deficiency?

    Lastly, there's the concept of induced deficiencies caused by toxicities. For example, high levels of zinc prevents the uptake and/or translocation of iron. This results in the appearance of iron deficiency, chlorosis of the newer leaves. Adding more iron may help offset zinc toxicity but it may not. In this instance, it's best to lower zinc concentrations instead. Otherwise, the water is polluted even more with heavy metals in an attempt to alleviate a toxicity.
     
  15. Cai1987

    Cai1987 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Ok @Solcielo lawrencia i have read the few arguments regarding all of this and arguments against. Generally there are alot of tests done but not in a closed environment. Ie different substrates, lighting, flow etc.
    If I am to follow your lead then what do you suggest? I'm already undervaluing measurements in regards to a unlimited capacity by going with my exact tank volume. I add 5ml of micro x3 times a week and same as macro. I change 50% of water x2 a week. What do I add? Half ei? Nothing at all?
    This is what's being added to my water column in a week: image.png
     
  16. Solcielo lawrencia

    Solcielo lawrencia Aspiring Aquascaper

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    The first thing that strikes me is the amount of copper being added. That's toxic. Zinc is also very high. It may not be prominent now since the tank is newly running but...

    A factor that affects the amount of metals in the water column is your substrate, which is Amazonia AS and will quickly adsorb cations. (All high CEC materials will adsorb cations.) This will alleviate toxicity and will do so most effectively when it's new, when there are still a lot of adsorption areas. However, after a few months or so, when the adsorption capacity is used up, that's when you'll be hit with very obvious signs of toxicity because it can no longer adsorb any more metals, which means it will be freely floating in the water column. This will harm plants. This is the point when people have no idea what's going on, because it spirals out of control and nothing grows well except for algae. Which leads to another issue that's expensive to replace...

    If the micros were imbalanced, e.g. excessively high Zn, then the substrate will have adsorbed excessively high concentrations of Zn. This means that even after you stopped dosing micros, the substrate will still provide toxic concentrations of Zn. The substrate is toxic and plants can no longer grow well in it.

    As for what I suggest, it depends on the water you have. Dose only the things your tap is deficient in, which isn't much from the WQ report. The Amazonia AS already has a lot of nutrients in it, including the macros and micros, so it may not be necessary to dose anything.
     
  17. isla

    isla Aspiring Aquascaper

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    lot of iron ...
    i think our california friend are right in his thinking .
    do we have more plant mass than got hydroponic per liter of water .
    they ( hydro-growers ) use a solution with no more than 0,1 ppm of iron ...
    think to the liebig ratio , do we have to add the more deficient element or make all more in equilibrium .
     
  18. Cai1987

    Cai1987 Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I've read a lot threads Solcielo has been in on many different forums. I know he speaks sense and he's a strong believer in there being many toxicity problems in tanks. I also know all round he knows ten fold of what I know. He's a clever chap.
    I'm just trying to find my way in this hobby.
    Too many people to listen to. Toxicity is there I'm sure. But what's causing it? Is it just the excessive micros or is it something ruse that's working to cause these elements to become toxic. It's quite evident soft water with low kh/gh are affecting more than hard with high kh/gh. The argument seems to be endless.
    I hope there is a definitive answer with those that are doing the controlled test, as then I can get on with enjoying my tank a little more.
    I know you will probably roll your eyes here Solcielo but bare with me please.
    I've ordered some tnc iron solution from nutrient company which I ordered a few days ago il add. I was planning on cutting a day of micro out to x2 days at 5ml and dosing iron separately on a single day of the week and see over say week or 2 the changes. If then, there is no change or I see clear evidence of toxicity within plants I will pull the plug on micros for 2weeks and then so on and so forth. I hope during this time I can learn more from my plants and the many threads that carry on spiralling out of control on the subject of ei, Tom Barr and toxicity and it's strongly argued findings.
     
  19. Solcielo lawrencia

    Solcielo lawrencia Aspiring Aquascaper

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    No, I'm not rolling my eyes. I'm glad that you're experimenting, which is something not very many people do. At least this way you can acquire experience instead of relying on anyone else.
     

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