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I am about to set up a 20g planted tank and need a little advice from you fertilizer experts out there. I have read about the PMDD and went to a garden store today looking for some of the ingredients. I was not able to find exactly what I was looking for, but I did buy a couple things plus I had a few bottles lying around and need advice as to which of the following fertilizers I could use and which ones I shouldn't(or don't need):

1)Epsom salts (Mg - 9.8% , S - 12.9% ---> derived from MgSO4+7H2O).

2)Dynamite plant food (18-6-8) --- In the form of little 1-2 mm pebbles to be put into substrate) -- they dissolve over the period of 6 months.
Total N = 18.0% (8.6% Ammoniacal Nitrogen, 9.4% Nitrate Nitrogen)
P2O5 = 6.0%
K2O = 8.0%
Mg(water soluble) = 1.2%
B = 0.02%
Cu = 0.05%
Fe(chelated) = 0.20%
Mn = 0.06%
Mo = 0.02%

3)Flourish Excel --- liquid fertilizer that is a source of Carbon, as well as breaking Fe(2+) down to Fe(3+), which is more easily used by plants.

4)Liquinox "Bloom" (0-10-10) --
P2O5(Phosphoric Acid) = 10%
K2O(Muriate of Potash) = 10%

5)Aquarium Pharmaceuticals "Root Tabs plus Iron" --
Soluble potash(K2O) = 3.0%
Mg = 1.0%
S = 3.0%
Fe = 15.0%

I'm planning on using Fluorite as the substrate, so maybe I won't need the plant food or root tabs really. As for the PMDD mixture I'm trying to gather the ingredients for, what else should I be looking for? Perhaps something with a little Nitrogen(not too much) and some more "traces"? If anyone who has a better grasp on the PMDD recipe or what chemicals I should be looking for, would you mind sharing? Thank you kindly :)
-Ryan Ingram
Davis, CA
 

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Here is a brief review of all the things you listed

1) It is often a good idea to use Epsom salts, especially if your water is somewhat soft and is lacking in Magnesium.

2) This product isn't very good for the planted aquarium as the ratio 18-6-8 has a nitrogen to phosphorous ratio of 3:1. What's usually aimed for is a ratio of about 10:1.

3) Good product, can be used in a 20g tank (may get expensive in the long run for larger tanks, as you have to dose more, and it can get costly)

4) Too much phosphorous, no nitrogen. Using this could lead to a "Bloom" of algae, as the name implies :)

5) I've never actually used this product, but I'm assuming that it's like most other root tabs.

Since you're using flourite as your substrate, you may not really have a need for the root tabs (though Crypts and Swords might appreciate the occasional root tab).

You should really look for a lone source of nitrogen, which is usually potassium nitrate (KNO3). It's found in the gardening centres of stores (i.e. Home Depot/Rona/Lowes) and is called "Stump Remover". Make sure that the Stump Remover you buy is pure KNO3 and does not have any other additives.

Other possibilities to add to a PMDD solution include K2SO4 or KCl (Often called No-Salt, it's a salt alternative that can be found in the grocery store) for sources of potassium; and of course, you'll need to find a good chelated trace mix.

Of course, you can always pay a visit to www.gregwatson.com and order the stuff online, provided you can't find them locally.
 

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ringram said:
2)Dynamite plant food (18-6-8) --- In the form of little 1-2 mm pebbles to be put into substrate) -- they dissolve over the period of 6 months.
Total N = 18.0% (8.6% Ammoniacal Nitrogen, 9.4% Nitrate Nitrogen)
There are some great products often available locally such as Green Stump remover ... the key to these products is the form that the Nitrate or Nitrogen is in ... The 9.4% Nitrate Nitrogen above is fine, but the the 8.6% Ammoniacal Nitrogen is an unpleasant catalyst for algae ...

Greg
 

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Dosing

Hi Ringram
Yes Greg Watson is a great supplier of everything you will need. Have you considered reading the Perpetual Preservation System PPS on the fertilizing section of the forum it is one of the stickies and a great source of information .

Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #5
No, I don't think I have -- I'll be sure to do that, thanks!
I also picked up a few things on the way home today:

1)Grant's stump remover (tiny pellets - I didn't see the powder stuff)

2)Fleet enema (felt real wierd putting this on the checkstand)

3)No-Salt (just the plain stuff, not "seasoned" lol)

This stuff, combined with the Epsom Salt I already have should about do it, right? It seems that I'll just need to find an iron source and something with "trace" elements. Thank you all -- I'll check into the resources I've been given :)
 

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I found it simple to make PMDD from the online recipes, given that I had a SFBAAPS club friend who gave me a starter bagful of Plantex CSM+B, K2SO4, KNO3, and Fleet Enema from Walgreen's. Made a 250 ml bottle by scaling down numbers. I have an accurate 1ml and 5ml disposable dropper.

I have a low light. low maint, 1wpg, 25g (actual) and 10 g tank. What I can't find is what is the daily starting dose. Is it a daily or weekly dose to follow classic PMDD recipes? I calculated I need to use 6 ml/25g. But is it daily or weekly?

I use EI in my high maint tank but am having a brain squeeze about how to do a low maint tank.

Seems every post I see is geared toward CO2 injection and 3wpg. I have no CO2 injected, so I am adding 2.5ml of Flourish Excel every other day to my 25g. I also fix my pH to 6.5 to 7 with acid buffer and nuetral buffer from Seachem and add Equilibrium because our water is really soft and thin in both Ca and Mg.
 

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Can't really help you with your dosing but I would change the way you mix your PMDD.

You shouldn't mix Fe in a stock solution with PO4 (Fleet Enema). The Fe and PO4 will precipitate out into FePO4 and this is not usable by the plants (at least short term).

A lot of people even dose the two (PO4 and Fe) seperately on seperate days to minimize the risk of this happening...
 
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