Diy Dry Ferts Without Nitrates?

Awaken_Riceball_

I have been pondering on this idea for while due to my nitrates remain relatively within the 10 - 15ppm range just on feeding the fish. I tend to overfeed simply for the apistogramma which are much slower eaters than the more aggressive eaters like the Angelfish and Emperor Tetras. It keeps my nitrates within that range after testing it 7 days straight.

Analyzing further, I dose using Nilocg Thrive+ which adds +7.5ppm of nitrates per 2ml dose which can easily send my nitrates hovering between 30 - 40ppm when I dose x3 (6ml) twice per week.

Going further, I am thinking once I finish this bottle, I can proceed forward with creating my own dry to liquid dose based on the EI Method without the nitrates or very little of it.

Will this work if my bio load is heavy enough to supply the nitrates to meet my plant needs? If so, then what dry fert should I purchase that does not contain nitrates or very little of it?

Thank you for any help!
 

Culprit

How heavily planted are you?

If anything... it sounds like you don't need to dose, but you could always get some K2SO4 for extra K, and then get some CSM+B for your micros. But if your plants aren't using all your nutrients you likely don't need to dose.
 

Awaken_Riceball_

How heavily planted are you?

If anything... it sounds like you don't need to dose, but you could always get some K2SO4 for extra K, and then get some CSM+B for your micros. But if your plants aren't using all your nutrients you likely don't need to dose.

Thank you Culprit! It is medium planted with mostly root feeding plants. The rest are slow growing column feeding plants except for the willow moss. So, K2SO4 is K without Nitrates?
 

Culprit

K2SO4 is plain K.

It sounds like you don't need any extra ferts with mostly root feeders and slow growing water column feeding plants.
 

Jocelyn Adelman

Would also go on the assumption you are using a good substrate...

So, when I first started dosing dry I just did kno3 and kh2po4. Nitrates stayed a bit higher. Added k2so4, plants were happier (same dose as kh2po4). Ended up increasing the kh2po4 a touch (really a touch) and my tanks seems to start bottoming out on nitrates... seems it was a slightly different balance I needed... also started adding a bit of equilibrium as a gH booster (doesn’t raise the gH in the amount dosed weekly) to my already hard water... this too is a possible reason for my nitrates starting to drop... can’t say for sure which it was...

Realistically, it seems for some reason yours aren’t using the N... the question is why? If primarily root feeders in good substrate this could be the answer... could also be the balance...

I dry dose, don’t pre mix. My tap nitrates change throughout the year, and often first dose post wc I am not dosing Kno3.... by mid week I need it.

If ordering dry get kno3 to have on hand either way.
Get
K2so4
Kh2po4
Kno3
Csmb
Iron (might not need additional, depends on plant selection)
GH booster (dosed once a week day of wc, also usually has K and Fe, as well as ca/mg)
 

Awaken_Riceball_

Would also go on the assumption you are using a good substrate...

So, when I first started dosing dry I just did kno3 and kh2po4. Nitrates stayed a bit higher. Added k2so4, plants were happier (same dose as kh2po4). Ended up increasing the kh2po4 a touch (really a touch) and my tanks seems to start bottoming out on nitrates... seems it was a slightly different balance I needed... also started adding a bit of equilibrium as a gH booster (doesn’t raise the gH in the amount dosed weekly) to my already hard water... this too is a possible reason for my nitrates starting to drop... can’t say for sure which it was...

Realistically, it seems for some reason yours aren’t using the N... the question is why? If primarily root feeders in good substrate this could be the answer... could also be the balance...

I dry dose, don’t pre mix. My tap nitrates change throughout the year, and often first dose post wc I am not dosing Kno3.... by mid week I need it.

If ordering dry get kno3 to have on hand either way.
Get
K2so4
Kh2po4
Kno3
Csmb
Iron (might not need additional, depends on plant selection)
GH booster (dosed once a week day of wc, also usually has K and Fe, as well as ca/mg)

Wow, information overload! Thank you so much Jocelyn, and it is much needed information to get me going in the right direction! I have hard water as well, my tap pH is 7.6, but it definitely dropped with injected CO2. I do not know by how much though. Thank you Jocelyn and Culprit for telling me what these letter / name stands for the dry ferts!
I will purchase all of what have mentioned Jocelyn, and if my nitrates does drop to 5ppm, then I will dose KNO3. Lastly, the substrate I use is Eco-Complete, and I also switched from Flourished to Nilocg root tabs as a test.
 

Jocelyn Adelman

With eco complete be sure to use root tabs... nilocg makes thrive tabs, my plants seem just as happy with thrive tabs as Seachem tabs, neither has an edge over the other. Disadvantage to thrive tabs is they are huge (about the size of an adult tums) Seachem tabs are about 1/3 the size, so depending on the scape keep that in mind. I go back and forth between the two often based on planting location. Skip the apI tabs, they make a mess. Osmocote tabs are another option, but I don’t love that the “balls” come to the surface of substrate at times, otherwise growth equal to the others.
 

Awaken_Riceball_

With eco complete be sure to use root tabs... nilocg makes thrive tabs, my plants seem just as happy with thrive tabs as Seachem tabs, neither has an edge over the other. Disadvantage to thrive tabs is they are huge (about the size of an adult tums) Seachem tabs are about 1/3 the size, so depending on the scape keep that in mind. I go back and forth between the two often based on planting location. Skip the apI tabs, they make a mess. Osmocote tabs are another option, but I don’t love that the “balls” come to the surface of substrate at times, otherwise growth equal to the others.

My aquarium is big enough for the Thrive root tabs, and it does need replacement about every 5 weeks. Like you mentioned, I cannot tell the difference between the two, but I do like Nilocg products and will most likely continue to support his products. I contacted Nilocg, and he did offer to create a custom bottle with just Potassium and Micros. I am going to take up his offer and see how it works as well as purchase the dry ferts!
 

Awaken_Riceball_

The custom mix arrived today, and I am pleasantly surprised that Nilocg will create a custom mix if you contact him. I took two pictures to show the mix up contents.
20180409_161353.jpg
20180409_162637.jpg
 

Jocelyn Adelman

His customer service can’t be beat! Can’t wait to see some pics!
 

Awaken_Riceball_

His customer service can’t be beat! Can’t wait to see some pics!

Yes! His customer service is top notched! I will upload a picture this Friday. I can already see a difference just after two days!
 

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