Aquatic Plant Forum banner
1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello!

I need some help on a fertilization issue and not only.

I am planning to make a small anubias nursery using a hydroponic system. I read Keith Roberto's How to Hydroponics. I found the "Lettuce Raft System" as the most appropriate for growing anubiases emersed.

Now the problem is the composition of the nutrient solution. Do I use a nutrient solution that is designed for hydroponic growth or do I use a solution that has the concentration of nutrients as in the aquarium? Roberto gave in the book 3 recipes for DIY nutrient solutions: one for vegetative, one for flowering and one for fruiting growth. These are designed for all kinds of plants, I guess... mainly vegetables. I believe that if I were to use one of these, it would have to be the vegetative one.

Now this one has the NPK ratio of 9,5-5,67-11,3. It is made of:
Ca(NO3)2
KNO3
K2SO4
KH2PO4
MgSO4
7% Fe TE solution

Is this one good for my goal?

Another issue is on choosing the right light for the system. I'm not planning to use Metal Halide, but regular aquarium fluorescent light. Which should I use? I thought about using Osram Floura. Is it good for Hydroponics? Is there another better? Which one?

Did anybody try to build a aquatic plant nursery using hydroponics?

Thanks a lot for all your input. This disscussion will be very helpfull.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
302 Posts
any good quality vege formula I wouldn't make my own unless you were going organic.
Maby try just having fish fertilize the plants.
For anubias the fluorescent should be fine if its pretty close.
You may need to do alot of misting or buy a automated mister.
I have a few plants growing on Styrofoam rafts
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
I find anubias grow well under standard flouro's, I also found that they do better with very low fert doses, too much and the leaves develop brown spots... I grow mine in a 50 litre fish bin with 2 flouros , with very occasional addiiton of pottasium nitrate and pottasium sulphate in powdered form.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I find anubias grow well under standard flouro's, I also found that they do better with very low fert doses, too much and the leaves develop brown spots... I grow mine in a 50 litre fish bin with 2 flouros , with very occasional addiiton of pottasium nitrate and pottasium sulphate in powdered form.

Those are some very nice looking plants you got there, FuglyDragon! Could you state what kind of fertilizers are you using and in what doses, please?

I just started to grow them in an emersed setup this week using a styrophone raft system. My current fertilizing formula for the solution on which the styrophone rests is as follows:

per gallon of solution:
6 g CaCO3
2.09 g KNO3
0.46 g K2SO4
1.39 g KH2PO4
2.42 g MgSO4x7H2O
also add Dennerle E15 Feractiv as iron suplement

What do you say about these dosages (as you have experience with growing them emersed)?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hi NeonRob,

Thanks for your message. Here it is:







I would really need an advice from somebody that has grown anubiases emersed before, on the fertilization formula. The current setup is been there for a week now and I could not notice any changes except for the flower in the 2nd picture. I know they were really stressed because of the shipping, that they have to adapt with the new setup, lighting, fertilization etc but I'm afraid not to give them a fertilizer burn as my current solution is really concentrated. But on the other hand I guess that if they were to burn from extraconcentrated solution they would have in this week, right?

I am still waiting for Fuglydragon's answer and advice since he looks like he's been doing this for some time. Any other advice is welcome.

@NeonRob: How long are you into emersed plant growing? What are you growing?

Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Hi.
Sorry for the delay in getting back to you.
My fert doseages won't be much use to you, unless our water and growing conditions are the same then we are starting from different baselines. Even variations in testing equipment make it dangerous to just use someone elses figures, you really need to find out your own, the plants will let you know when you have it right.

What I do is set up an excel spreadsheet (or a notebook will do) and keep accurate records of what I do and what the reults are untill I establish what is needed for each grow tub. Before each water change i record.

PH and DkH and calc CO2 (PH Meter and JBL Test Kit)
NO3 (Nitrate) (JBL Test Kit)
PO4 (Phosphate) (JBL Test Kit)
FE (Iron / trace elements) (JBL Test Kit)

I then record how much water I changed and what fert dosages I added, then the next day after 24 hours of water circulation through the tubs I do the tests over again. Mid way through the week run a further set of tests

If you change water every weekend then you will get a rerasonable set of figures to work with after a few weeks.


The reactions of the plants will tell you what they prefer. Of course the slow growers like anubias mean you need to be patient :)

Just change one thing at a time and use your measureing kits to get results which you can then track (and graph) in excel. That way you will be able to get a feel for how much and how often you need to dose to get good growing results.

From my experiance the following can help...

Keep NO3 and PO4 in balance and things go well, do a search for 'Redfield ratio' to find out the relationship between NO3 (nitrate) and PO4 (Phosphate)

I mix dry powder with 500ml tap water as follows.

KNO3 3 TBS to 500ml
K2SO4 5 Tsp to 500ml
Trace 3 TBS to 500ml
PO4 1 TBS to 500ml

dosages I am working on for my 45 litres Anubias tub at present are...

KNO3 .25tsp powder or 16ml
K2SO4 18ml
PO4 2ml
Mg .25 tsp
FE 1ml Seachem or 2ml of Trace mix
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
601 Posts
Crapu',

I've been growing aquatic plants emersed since March of this year. I've had varying levels of success with foreground and stem plants, not much luck with Anubias. I like your approach and would like to try something similar.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for your replies guys!

I have a potential big problem on my hands. It's been 10 days since I set it up and there is almost no growth recorded. I know anubiases are slow growers and that they need to get used to my new setup,BUT comparing to the ones in my aquariums there should have been changes. I watch the new leaves which were sprouting when I got them to see changes. Just yesterday I noticed a very small growing of the new leaves, but I am waiting for them to show all the leaf, in order to see if I got the nutrients right.

I have in this tank 62 anubiases (barteti barteri, barteri nana, b. nana coffeefolia, lanceolata, congensis and petite). In these 10 days I lost 2 (the rizome rotted even if I didn't burry the rizome - I have no idea why) and I just found one that was starting to rot [ photo 1 ]. I sectioned the rizome untill I got to the good tissue and I put it back. Do you have any idea why that happened?

I also noticed some signs of nutrient defficiency. Please help me identify it:

1. some of the leaves turned to pale green between the veins, but the veins remain dark green. [ photo2 ]. This would be a iron or nitrogen defficiency? Right? There are no new leaves to see if they are paler but I gues it's iron, right? There is no way it could be iron since I put 1/2 tablet of Dennerle E15 Feractiv in the water weekly which should be dosed for 50 l of aquarium water every month.

2. I also noticed that 1-2 leaves are dried and starting to rot at the tips, but I guess this is because the plants remained unmisted 2 days when I left town for a wedding, right? [ photo3 ]

3. On 2 leaves I noticed some pale spots. Does anybody know what they mean? [ photo4 ].

Because I had a good growth rate with my anubiases immersed I changed the whole solution on which the plants rest introducing a solution with nutrient concentration slightly higher than in the aquarium:
PO4 = 2
NO3 = 20
Mg = 20
K = don't remember... abot 20-30
Fe = 1/2 tb Dennerle V30 Feractiv
for trace elements I dosed one pump of Dennerle V30 Complete in the solution. I forgot to mention that I have 30 l of water in there. I will see what happends with these concentrations.

I am afraid not to lose more plants now, at the bigining before I have growth there and not to be able to identify where I went wrong.

Thanks for your help guys, please help me with my questions. I will keep you posted on what happened.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
@Fuglydragon:

Please tell me which are the levels of the followin elements in your 45 l tub:

NO3=?
PO4=?
K=?
Mg=?
Fe=?

Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Great thread!

I have some noob questions for the experts. :p

I was wondering if a setup like this would work to bring my Anubias "nana" back to life. I have 6 x 6 inch plants in varying states of decay. They are still putting on new leaves about 1 per week, but the real problem is the tank mates. Tropheus, they are pretty rough on them. A lot of broken leaves.
So if i could move the plants to a tub for a few months to allow the plants to recuperate and maybe propagate a bit that would be great. I have a couple of questions

1. Do you keep the lids on the tubs to trap the humidity? Or do the lights just hang over top.

2. Approx. how much water are you putting in the tubs % wise?

3. Is there any water movement or aeration going on in there?

4. Could i just use the dirty tank water on water change day + excel as far as fertilizers are concerned?

5. Is the rhizome above or below the waterline in these types of emersed setups?

6. What is the ideal amount of light/wattage for growing anubias in such a way.

Thanks everyone!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Great thread!

I have some noob questions for the experts. :p

I was wondering if a setup like this would work to bring my Anubias "nana" back to life. I have 6 x 6 inch plants in varying states of decay. They are still putting on new leaves about 1 per week, but the real problem is the tank mates. Tropheus, they are pretty rough on them. A lot of broken leaves.
So if i could move the plants to a tub for a few months to allow the plants to recuperate and maybe propagate a bit that would be great. I have a couple of questions

1. Do you keep the lids on the tubs to trap the humidity? Or do the lights just hang over top.

2. Approx. how much water are you putting in the tubs % wise?

3. Is there any water movement or aeration going on in there?

4. Could i just use the dirty tank water on water change day + excel as far as fertilizers are concerned?

5. Is the rhizome above or below the waterline in these types of emersed setups?

6. What is the ideal amount of light/wattage for growing anubias in such a way.

Thanks everyone!
I'm fairly new to this type of setup but here are some answers to your questions that I have from my research.
1. Yes i would keep the lid closed with just a little ventalation
2. and 5. Water should be just above the rhizome keeping the leaves above the water. Make sure you keep the leave moist either spraying it with water a few time a day or do what I do and set up a sprinkler attach to a pump.
3. I use a water pump to cirulate the water. Don't think you need a air pump or co2 as its available in the atmosphere
4. Not sure about that question but I just use clean water an mix up the substrate in the pots so that its rich in nutrients (I'm growing anubias, crypts and echinodorus species)
6. Anubias can grow in low light. I have been able to grow them in 1.5wpg but pretty slowly. With the anubias i'm growing emerse they are in the outdoor setup which gets 6hrs of sunlight but i cover the tub with a 70% shade cloth. Too strong light can kill the plant from my experience.

Hope that helps with you quiries
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
FurlyDragon, all that testing sounds complicated. Do you keep different mixes for different plants as well? And what substrate do you use?

Crapu, I've read of organic hydroponics online. One system suggested using soil in the substrate while keeping the pot in a lettuce-raft or Nutrient Film Technique setup. Don't know if this will result to faster growth, but the article says it will entail less testing and maintenance since you probably won't need to adjust ph, etc. I'm inclined to try this as well as I don't have access to good hydroponic solutions where I live.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Thanks for the reply Bubbs.
I set up a 3 gallon tank with 1/2" of garden soil under 1 inch of sand. I've placed my rhizomes on the top and pushed the roots into the substrate. I've filled the tank with only enough water to cover the rhizomes (about 4 inches deep). the tank is being lit by a 13W. fluro. My concern now is that there is no water circulation. Will my setup stagnate and rot? should i be doing something else? Anubias is a bog plant right, so would it not do "better" in stagnant waters? Thanks gang! I'll have to remember to take some before and after shots :twitch:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Crapu, what has come of your project? I tried planting anubias in garden soil and gravel on top. I put the pot right next to a springkler. It's been a few weeks and so far the leaves have turned yellow and started to rot in some areas. I think this may be because there's too much nutrient in the substrate, or the leaves are adapting to their emmersed state.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
@bluediscus: thanks for asking. It has been a couple of monthgs now. My Anubias Barteri var. Nana it's been going worse and worse. I've been lowering the concentrations of macroelements to the levels accepted in the aquarium, maybe a little higher (PO4 2 and NO3 20 ppm). The Anubias Barteri var. Nana it still didn't want to start going and some rotted away, some turned yellow thus I sold as many as I could.

In stead, the Anubias Barteri var. Coffeefolia are going great! They are trowing a new leaf every 2 weeks. The Anubias 'Petite' is also going great.

I also planted more plants to test what will work in my conditions. I planted Hygrophila Polisperma 'Rosanervig', Bacopa Caroliniana, Ludwigia Arcuata, Hemianthus Callicoides 'Cuba', Marsilea Hirsuta, Heteranthera Zosterfolia and Hydrocotile. They all are growing, but slow. I suspect it is the light which might be not sufficient for it. We will see. This was meant to be an experiment of what can grow in what conditions. I don't want to test which are the conditions for growing all the plants, but I am happy that some do grow. My next project involves the information that I gained from this one and is represented by a 21 square meters of emersed setup. Good luck with your experiments and keep me posted with information.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top