Liquid Fertilizers

maritzsa

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Hey guys so I was wondering if liquid fertilizers can successfully double as GH boosters. Because I did a test with NilocG Thrive liquid fertilizer and it increased GH ( I test with api liquid tests). I do have soft water but liquid fertilizer adds calcium and magnesium and keeps my GH raised over the course of the week, I just don’t know if it is a reliable way to keep a healthy GH. I also have small tanks biggest beig 20 Gallon long so I don’t run out of stuff too fast.
 

Bruce Leyland-Jones

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Hey guys so I was wondering if liquid fertilizers can successfully double as GH boosters. Because I did a test with NilocG Thrive liquid fertilizer and it increased GH ( I test with api liquid tests). I do have soft water but liquid fertilizer adds calcium and magnesium and keeps my GH raised over the course of the week, I just don’t know if it is a reliable way to keep a healthy GH. I also have small tanks biggest beig 20 Gallon long so I don’t run out of stuff too fast.
Whilst I won't question the effect of liquid plant fertilisers on the general hardness of the water, (and even pH), I would strongly advise against using these as a means to manage water hardness.
Liquid fertilisers are intended to feed plants and contain the nutrient minerals in order to do so. Most of the literature regarding these recommends not overdosing, as this can have a detrimental effect on the resident fish and can promote algae growth.
When setting up my tanks and relying upon good plant growth to facilitate my cycling, I happily used the Tropica liquid plant food. I might also use it when trying to establish new plants. However, I now choose to let my fish waste feed the plants and so do not regularly use a liquid fertiliser, for fear of the issues I mentioned earlier.

Also, understand that if you start messing with your water's hardness, then you are committing yourself to have to maintain those levels for as long as you run the tank and will need to make adjustments to every bit of water you add to the tank within its lifetime.
 

Colin_T

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No, plant fertiliser should not raise the GH. If it does, then it will be the calcium in the fertiliser doing it. However, it should not be used to buffer the pH, GH or KH. Use a Rift Lake water conditioner to do this.
 

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Indeed, have to agree with Bruce here about the kind of commitment needed if you are going to go down that path of maintaining either a lower or higher pH, lots of considerations will need to be taken into account.

But in a nutshell, liquid ferts do little to lower or increase ph or hardness if at all really, and reliability of this method is questioned especially when plants continue to grow and thus more liquid ferts need to be added on an ongoing basis.

Ph and hardness swings in the water column is ultimately detrimental to the livestock's health to be fair.
 
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maritzsa

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Whilst I won't question the effect of liquid plant fertilisers on the general hardness of the water, (and even pH), I would strongly advise against using these as a means to manage water hardness.
Liquid fertilisers are intended to feed plants and contain the nutrient minerals in order to do so. Most of the literature regarding these recommends not overdosing, as this can have a detrimental effect on the resident fish and can promote algae growth.
When setting up my tanks and relying upon good plant growth to facilitate my cycling, I happily used the Tropica liquid plant food. I might also use it when trying to establish new plants. However, I now choose to let my fish waste feed the plants and so do not regularly use a liquid fertiliser, for fear of the issues I mentioned earlier.

Also, understand that if you start messing with your water's hardness, then you are committing yourself to have to maintain those levels for as long as you run the tank and will need to make adjustments to every bit of water you add to the tank within its lifetime.
I think you misunderstand me, I don’t overdose them I slightly underdose even and that already gets my GH up to a good level. And I do weekly changes and dose the fertilizers again anyways. Sorry, yeah I never overdose.
 
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maritzsa

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No, plant fertiliser should not raise the GH. If it does, then it will be the calcium in the fertiliser doing it. However, it should not be used to buffer the pH, GH or KH. Use a Rift Lake water conditioner to do this.
Yeah it has Calcium and Magnesium in the fertilizer, does not affect Ph from my testings but increases GH when I dose it the right way. But I just did not know the reliability of that. Thanks guys
 
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maritzsa

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Remember whatever you put in your tank your fish drink. Would you like to drink water with fertilizer in it?
Well water already normally contains a bunch of trace elements and minerals that exist in fertilizers they arent chemicals they are minerals that exist in every food and drink we have too and fish have in waters too. I do agree maybe it does not apply to an enclosed ecosystem because they are so small but yeah normal fertilizers with no chemical additives are stuff that just exist in water and food everywhere
 

itiwhetu

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Well water already normally contains a bunch of trace elements and minerals that exist in fertilizers they arent chemicals they are minerals that exist in every food and drink we have too and fish have in waters too. I do agree maybe it does not apply to an enclosed ecosystem because they are so small but yeah normal fertilizers with no chemical additives are stuff that just exist in water and food everywhere
So, if they exist in all water why add any extra. Mother nature has designed plants and animals to live in what she has provided. But humans continually think they can do things better than her.
 
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maritzsa

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So, if they exist in all water why add any extra. Mother nature has designed plants and animals to live in what she has provided. But humans continually think they can do things better than her.
no I wouldn’t add any normally but our house has a water purification system that removes almost all the nutrients and trace elements from water so if i dont have fertilizers my plants struggle unless I over stock my tanks so theres an abundance of nitrate. But I do not overstock, and since my tap water is purified it has nothing useful in it that plants and animals utilize in their body functions. Sorry I shouldve described these details!
 

FishNturt808

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So, if they exist in all water why add any extra. Mother nature has designed plants and animals to live in what she has provided. But humans continually think they can do things better than her.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t the liquid ferts basically designed to supplement the minerals that would normally be in nature since most of our water supply is treated to some degree or another to remove those same minerals?
 

itiwhetu

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Correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t the liquid ferts basically designed to supplement the minerals that would normally be in nature since most of our water supply is treated to some degree or another to remove those same minerals?
Anything you add will affect the osmotic pressure of the fish.
 

FishNturt808

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I had to google osmotic pressure. So, that would be the ability for the pure water to pass thru the fishes skin membrane?
 

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I was mildly concerned that my tank was measuring a tiny bit more gH than my tap water.

The I read another post on here and realised there is Ca and K in flourish comp.
 

Byron

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I was mildly concerned that my tank was measuring a tiny bit more gH than my tap water.

The I read another post on here and realised there is Ca and K in flourish comp.

Yes there is, but it is not sufficient to increase the GH with normal recommended dosage. I have been using Flourish Comp and the tabs for over ten years, and they have never raised the GH sufficiently to be able to measure it with the API liquid test, which would be 1 dH. The calcium in FC is very low (some say too low for any benefit, but they forget this is a supplement, not a source, of some of the nutrients).
 

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