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has anyone read this? (sears-conlin article on algae)

ceg4048

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Guys, it's unfortunate that you feel that way, and I'd have to apologize for contributing to the feeling of intimidation or that the feeling of being attacked by the brigade as James puts it. At no point have I or anyone attacked the low nutrient, non-CO2 approach. But that's not what the majority of people do. Most come to the forum with a high tank lighting far beyond reasonable levels. The preponderance of high light tanks is so massive that we have a low tech sub-forum, do we not? I mean, that's what people have chosen to do, use high lighting.

James, I think that you would agree that using a non-CO2 low nutrient approach with massive lighting is not as simple, and does not have a high probability of success. Normally, the first thing I look at when someone posts an issue with their tank is their level of lighting. But if they insist on using high lights, how else would you solve the problem? I think that's the key point. It's easy to suggest that they toss their CO2 and reduce their dosing, but if they choose not to reduce the lighting? Then what? Did we not agree that there should be a balance between the PAR energy levels and CO2/nutrients?

This is also complicated by the fact that many of those advocating low nutrients are doing so because of their fear of nutrient toxicity or that they merely automatically correlate nutrients with algae without having any knowledge or experience.

I think it unfair to accuse me of having the intent of intimidation. I'm happy to have anyone post their arguments but the proof of the pudding must be in their results. Also I feel that many of the nutrient reduction arguments are out of context with the OPs tank configuration or with their objectives. Darrel, you yourself have stated that you have never run a high tech tank, yet you offer advice (which seems to me) more appropriate to non-CO2 tanks when answering a question regarding a high light tank.

There are plenty of successful non-CO2 tanks out there, but I've not seen a whole lot of high light tanks run successfully using the low tech approach. The ADA approach is a low water column dosing approach, but that's made up for by use of an extremely nutrient rich sediment. It's also a very expensive approach. So where are we? An overwhelming majority of hobbyist who insist on using megawatts and CO2. Why wouldn't the preponderance of advice be similar?


Ha :lol: The High Priest of Nutrients/CO2 vs The Evil Empire of Huge Volumes of 150 Years of Scientific Data - I love it!

Cheers,
 

JamesC

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Bexley, Kent
If you haven't already take a wander over to CAU - http://www.cau-aqua.net/ and look how the CO2 enriched tanks there are set up and also the dosing. Lighting is fairly high, CO2 is high but water column dosing is lean. Yes ADA AS is used but a lot of the scapes use moss, ferns etc that get all their nutrients from water column. Growth is slower but at the same time more compact.

James
 

plantbrain

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dw1305 said:
However I still think we are to some extent talking at cross purposes, my basic premise is that nutrient limitation in the water column(including CO2), which Tom alludes to in his post, is a viable alternative for planted tanks. It certainly doesn't give you optimum plant growth, but it is a simple approach, and gives you long term stability.

Hummm, but it's one method and each has a trade off there.
You can use several things to limit and manage growth rates.

That's what each specific method essentially boils down to, not what is best for plant growth :idea:

So what are those trade offs?
Is limiting nutrients easier than say limiting growth via light?
Which is the more stable parameter?

Light is by far the most stable input we have and where all growth rates will start.
PO4 is way way down the line. Limiting that more strongly than say light or CO2 will slow growth effectively.
CO2 is also highly variable, so some use that to limit plant growth.
Here's an example and I've seen many others:

nonCO2cube3.jpg


No water changes, testing etc.
Nice managed growth and nice looking tank.
Now this same aquarium could be dosed via the sediments, but it's not there(plain sand only), it's water column.
The point is that we can go either location for nutrient sources without any risk to algae issues and still scape nicely etc.

Same applies to CO2 enriched systems.

But...........I think this either or business is short sighted also. I think using both locations makes for the best managed system. This takes the trade offs for each and makes them all benefits.

They work synergistically together.

I'd also suggest that for many people who are struggling with continual algal blooms, unbalanced nutrients etc that they would be better returning to the low tech approach, finding a low nutrient/low growth datum, and then, if they wish to have faster plant growth, and grow a variety of more demanding plants, over time raise nutrients and CO2.

I agree 100%. You left out light intensity but I think you are fully aware of it's role there. I have spent well over a decade telling folks to use less light, not more. We can control light more than any other parameter and it makes management of all downstream parameter easier and more wiggle room.

I think of this in terms of "potential", both the potential for growth, and also the potential for things to become unbalanced, low potential slow growth and slow change, greater potential greater growth but greater potential for things to go "wrong."

Agreed 110% there.
So how best to do that?
What tools management wise do we have?
Light, CO2 and nutrients.

Light and CO2 have the largest impact by far on growth. CO2 kills more fish and causes more algae issues than any nutrient ever will. Too much light causes lots of issues as well. Nutrients, by and large, are pretty far down on the list and require more testing and care, eg labor and management to address than say light or not using CO2.

I only started posting on this forum, after a long term lurking and reading what have been a stream of brilliant posts, because I had become increasingly concerned that it had stopped being a forum where different experiences and options could be discussed, and had become a forum where you had to agree that "high nutrients, High CO2" was the answer to every question, and if you tried to post any other view your opinions were ridiculed, presumably with the intent of intimidating heterodox posters into not posting.

No, the merits of the content should be judged fairly.
Look, I have been poo pooed far more than you, James, or anyone ever has on line.
Far more. But, I do not let it bug me. My attitude is different. Many got extremely personal about it.
I've been threatened with lawsuits and some acted upon them over this silly stuff.
Still, I think been bullied it not good for many posters, they do not want to get all into it.
Too much drama over silly things. Perhaps they are right.

You will note, I support strongly the lower tech non CO2 methods, I even developed a water column dosing method for that to look at another way to do such methods. It does not take away from sediment sources of nutrients, it only illustrates it was not nutrient limitation in the water column that induces algae. Nothing more or implied. It does not suggest sediment enriched sediments are in any way bad, worse etc.

I think some mix this up to mean that the water column rich method is somehow "bad" and on the other side, the sediment only folks claim there's something to the method of using rich sediments.
The reality is that both are correct and both groups can gain a lot more by using BOTH together rather than buying into all the Horse manure myths surrounding each camp.

Understanding why each location and method works, what mechanisms control it etc.
This is not that hard, getting folks over their own prejudices and assumptions on both sides is however, much more the issue. All 3 variations work very well and are manageable. The human factors are considered from there.

I'm fortunate in that I'm in a position where I have the solid bed-rock of a scientific background (in a related field) and access to all the relevant scientific literature. I don't know whether I'm right or wrong, but I would suspect that the high priest of "high nutrients, High CO2" know, without a scintilla of doubt, that they are right.

I'd suggest being much more skeptical, while we can falsify some hypotheses, demonstrating what they are and why is quite another matter. :!: Just because we falsify one idea, does not imply that our speculation about why it is that way ......is correct.

Folks need to look further.
This process never ends, but does get better and much more broad understanding comes into view.
Reconciling the various methods has been one of my goals and the topic of my talks/presentations.

I'd suggest to all members if the forum that this forum needs to remain a "broad church", and that they should keep observing what happens and keep a dose of healthy scepticism, particularly for all more "fundamentalist" posters.

cheers Darrel

I think there is that trend, many of the higher light/CO2 enrichment camp folks are coming back to the non CO2 methods. Many here use lower light also in the UK, high light is really a big problem in the USA, land of bigger is better :rolleyes:

Still, many older folks in the UK used non CO2 and low tech approaches very well for a long time for this crowd came along.

I have mastered low tech many moons ago, and water column methods as well.
So the last decade or so has been more why, how, what rates of growth do for each method and how different are they really in terms of plant growth, what is the management goal for each person?

Are all management goals the same for every tank and every aquarist?
Clearly not, thus no one method will be all things to all people.

I think the Tropica Article on CO2 with Riccia will help you put the CO2/light issue together.
If you added nutrients to that diagram as well, then you can tie all 3 facets together, it's a bit more complicated, but it can be done.

Give that a good read.
Rather than advocating one method, try doing and mastering each method.
In doing so you will be able to help more people reach their management goals, rather than trying to make more clones of yourself. It's much more about them, than you :thumbup:


Regards,
Tom Barr
 

plantbrain

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ceg4048 said:
Guys, it's unfortunate that you feel that way, and I'd have to apologize for contributing to the feeling of intimidation or that the feeling of being attacked by the brigade as James puts it. At no point have I or anyone attacked the low nutrient, non-CO2 approach. But that's not what the majority of people do. Most come to the forum with a high tank lighting far beyond reasonable levels. The preponderance of high light tanks is so massive that we have a low tech sub-forum, do we not? I mean, that's what people have chosen to do, use high lighting.

Yea, ya big bully:)
haha

(you'd better laugh dammit!)

I think it comes off that way to some, if they feel this way, say so.
Darrel did and then clarify from there.
I come off that way sometimes, I try to avoid it, but if anyone is in any doubt, ask me.

Still, even though I strongly and actively advocate low light, non CO2, DSM's, wise management trade offs, good use of testing methods, calibrations etc, many folks (not all folks) still associate me with EI, high light/CO2 etc.

Perhaps you can do a nice non CO2 planted tank and show them up?
hehe

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

plantbrain

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JamesC said:
If you haven't already take a wander over to CAU - http://www.cau-aqua.net/ and look how the CO2 enriched tanks there are set up and also the dosing. Lighting is fairly high, CO2 is high but water column dosing is lean. Yes ADA AS is used but a lot of the scapes use moss, ferns etc that get all their nutrients from water column. Growth is slower but at the same time more compact.

James

The total amount of nutrients is still high and sediments are not particularly old either.
We also do not really know what the light PAR is or is not.

ADA lighting appeared to be rather high, I'd assumed equal on many fronts, till I actually went and measured it.
Careful,about your assumptions also :thumbup:

My own where very wrong about ADA's lights, they where much less than I predicted.
This obviously can play a very dramatic role when comparing growth parameters, nutrients and CO2.

Good testing and measurement is rarely done, this leads to lot more misconceptions, myths and other issues. That is a hobbyist issue that is enormous to say the least.

In Brazil, a similar group did similar nice scaping, they used worm castings, that's all they had, the lighting seemed high, but really fairly low. Same for ADA.

Sticking with the lower range of light reduces the demand from plants for nutrients and they have more time to translocate nutrients from sediments to the leaves. Simialrly, for CO2, there's less demand for high CO2 and less variation.

There is also less fish stress due to lower CO2 requirements, reducing the respiration energy needed.
While each(limiting/adjustign light, CO2 or nutrients/location) will work individually, using all of the tools to make management easier would be the wiser approach and get away from the myths associated with each.

This is a much more global perspective and one that is better able to focus on the wider goal sets of the aquarist and aquatic plants.

Still, low light, rich CO2 nutrients is not bad, nor is leaner nutrients, there's low risk either way. At higher light, more CO2 is needed and more nutrients. Maxmimal growth will ,achieved with high light in the 400-600 range, high nutrients in both locations and high CO2. Most do not want that goal, I don't. But from a testing view, knowing that end and then knowing the non CO2 low light no dosing routine gives you an upper and lower bound of mastery, everything else will be in between those two extremes. This will suit most every possible goal.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

Mark Evans

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i know jack about the science behind EI, but one thing i am sure about is, the fact since i started EI, i've never had more success with growing plants than i have had of late. It's the most (for me)simplistic way of ferting a tank.

pick your tank size and add ferts...simples. by the way, even with lights suspended high, EI has become even more joyful.

call me devils advocate :shifty:
 

plantbrain

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saintly said:
i know jack about the science behind EI, but one thing i am sure about is, the fact since i started EI, i've never had more success with growing plants than i have had of late. It's the most (for me)simplistic way of ferting a tank.

pick your tank size and add ferts...simples. by the way, even with lights suspended high, EI has become even more joyful.

call me devils advocate :shifty:

Well even within the EI camp, there are misconceptions, myths etc, assumptions.
This is true for sediment enrichments as well.
Or leaner is "better" etc.

EI is a concept and it can and is modified by many to suit.
It was a response to giving advice to rule out a limiting factor for nutrients.

I think some got pissed off and thought that there was something to the PO4 limitation or low PO4 methods.
That is was not really "false" or a "bad" method. I do not claim that it is, only that the hypothesis about algae cannot be correct.

What occurs when you strongly limit PO4? Well plant growth is also limited. This might be a goal or a good thing for some as far as management. Same as using less light will limit growth, or going non cO2, or using Excel instead.

Now here's where many lose the logic: by strongly limiting PO4, this reduces CO2 demand. In other words, PO4 limitation is stronger than CO2 limitation. So adding say 15ppm of CO2 is fine for a given light intensity, whereas prior, with high PO4, the demand for CO2 would be 30ppm for similar results.

If you are not good at managing CO2, and had BBA, or other algae issues using EI, then switched to PMDD, and found better results, less algae, this is what occurred. However, if you simply reduced the light intensity, you'd had the same effect also. We can also go back and show that a non limit PO4 planted tank with better CO2 does not have algae and has nice color and results as well.

So this points to the PO4 limitation being stronger than the CO2 limitation in those cases.If you only test one situation, and not look at the other side of the coin, then you really do not know much. In the non CO2 enriched systems, the CO2 is the most limiting factor, so the ppm's can be very high there(N or P or both) and no algae as well. Plants are limited by CO2, but adapt well over time to stable CO2 low levels.

Where you are trying to add minimal CO2 enrichment, limiting PO4 and you also want higher light intesity, then the method works, but you have the watch and manage PO4. Paul Sears stated clearly not to allow the PO4 to drop to zero, rather, to keep it low, but not absent.

This becomes increasingly tougher at progressively higher light. I chose high light for this reason to look at uptake, growth and algae, management etc decades ago for this very reason. Sediment ferts can supply some of the PO4, but since it's at higher light, you also need higher CO2, which is a conflict in the original premise............ You also run the risk of limiting issues in the water column as the rates of growth increase.

Seems much wiser, at least from a management perspective, to simply use lower light.
Tropica's Claus, Ole and Troels, as well as myself all believe this. We do not disagree, I know of no academics in the field that do on these issues. The results are very evident where folks have actually done the measurements carefully. I suppose it's okay to guess with respect to CO2 and light, but be critical about the nutrients? There's some conflict with that argument I'd say. If you plan on measurements, do the spectrum, not just some with bad assumptions and not checking the other factors/interactions. That type of debate is weak at best and if you need to use the getting personal "card" basically to make the case, well, then the merits/logic of the method cannot stand well on their own.

That is self evident.

I do not jive well with that type of debate and tear into it without prejudice.
However, the issue is still about how to best manage a given set of trades/goals the aquarist has.
Not some spat between folks who do a particular method/cannot master the other methods.

If you can master them, then well...........you can say something, if not, well, you really cannot say too much. Many fail with CO2 enrichment, perhaps we should tell folks using CO2 they are "bullying' "lording over us" us?
I can play on any side of these cards as devil's advocate.

Are folks CO2 enrichment bias?
I'd say most forums are.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

spider72

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21 Apr 2008
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Wick, Scotland
Can we growth healthy plants limiting phosphate?
Of course we can.
Sears-Conlin paper became small bible in Poland where I have been born, and many of polish plant keepers became so skilled in this than many of them even don't need to test phophate levels. They just know their tanks very well from their expiriece, as they are using this method from years. This is because they never heard of EI and Sears-Colin principle became the only known method to limit algae, but this principle is also limiting plant growth.
I can post dozens of links to tanks succesfully run on this principle, but I will post just one http://www.holenderskie.pl/forum/viewto ... 4041#94041
There is a clean gravel as a substrate, 0.7W/liter T5 lighting, filter turnover 0.6 tank volume per hour (real turnover is less, as this is manufacturer nominal pump efficiency), CO2 injection is via wooden diffusor.
Look at the plant condition, wow what a skill.
Yes I have used word "skill" for a purpose, because you need to waste a lot of time with tests and get a lot of painfull lessons with algae issue beafore you will gain that skill, as margin for error with phosphate limiting is very narrow.
If you will doze not enough, than you have plant defficency and algae related to phosphate limiting, if you will add too much than you have defficiency and algae related to CO2 limiting. How do you know which one is the case when algae appears? You need to relay on poor quality tests and try, and try, and try. Many newcomers to the hobby just lost their patience and left the hobby before they learn this skill. Many is still trying, and that is why 70% of all posts on polish forums is in Fertilizing and Algae forum sections.
Most of these skill plantkeepers have light level 1.0-1.2W/liter, but when you ask them for growth rate, than you will realize, that is about 5 times slower compare to non limiting nutrient dozing method. Wow, what a waste of light. But ask them for what they need so much light, they will answer "for better plant growth". From example of above tank it is clear why they don't need good water flow and high and stable CO2 level with high light level, because growth and uptake are so slow that this just does not matter, 20ppm CO2 level will do, and is easy to achive because of uptake rate. But they are balancing on the edge of the knife all the time with phosphates, small error up or down and boom, algae bloom.
So, for sure EI is not the only succesful method for keeping healthy plants, but is very easy for beginers, less stressfull, much more efficient and is giving good growth as a revard for beginer insted of algae, and they will be not scared off of the hobby so easly.
When people invented diesel and electric engines, than after some time steam engine disappeared as it was less efficient and more difficult and expensive to run, that is why Sears-Conlin principle and PMDD are less and less in use now, and there is no reason to be angry about this. We just need to remeber that these folks was trying to explain some things and pushed our hobby forword. They missed some points which have been picked up by others and than we have progress again. We just need to thank them for their effort, what Tom did at the end of his EI article, and move on.
Yes we can still use old PMDD engine with some expirience, but is it worth our efforts when we can not put this method to simple dosing regime?

chartenglish.jpg


I am a member of this this forum for quite a long time now, but as you can see I am not posting too much, as I am busy on polish forums with explaining how easy plant keeping can be, and "coverting" ;) polish scapers to EI. You don't need me here as you all are in good hands.
I would like to thank you all guys. Thanks to Tom for puting all this stuff together and his efforts over the years with research and plant keepers education and for support my efforts in my country to fight "nutrient fears". Tanks to Clive for puting all this scientific stuff to straight words and therms, and also for support with "converting" ;) polish folks.
Tanks to JamesC for his countless tips on plant keeping, this forum is full of it, and for his excellent algae guide on his website, to which I am refering very often as it has new approach to algae cause, not nutrients overdosing but CO2 issues. Be sure James that I will ask you soon for permission to translate this guide to polish :silent: .
And at the end I want to thank all UKaps members for their problems and questions, as this is causing information flow from these guys above, so I don't need to ask them anything, what I need is read the answers.
Many folks on polish forums thinks that I am a guy with good knowladge about plant keeping as my advice is working in most cases, and they even gived me expert rank on some forums. Well, I am always saying that I am just translator and I am giving all the credits to you guys.
You may not realize how big impact you are making in my country. Many of you already know that Poland has the biggest number of contestant from outside of Asia in the popular ADA Aquascaping contest, and they are higher in ranking every year. That is because, before only ADA system users had engine powerfull enough to produce some results in short period of time, but this engine is expensive especially in Poland when people earn less. Now they have EI engine, very cheap and even more efficient and thay can concentrate now on scaping without algae issue, so you know the cause now.
This is all your fault ;) , so thanks from my countryman as well, as many of them can't speak english to thank you in person. Their success is your success and here is quick example http://www.roslinyakwariowe.pl/forum/vi ... hp?t=27360 25th place IPALC 2009 and the highest note from one of the judges.

James do not disapper from this forum, as you still have a lot to say and we all can benefit from your experience.

Sorry for my english, but is late now.

Regards
 
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I'm interested in the dubious idea that there are two conflicting camps - high tech and low tech. As a complete newbie to aquaria (I've just started my first ever tank) I did my research and realised I simply couldn't know what approach would suit me until I got stuck in.

Unsurprisingly, five days in I still don't know. What I've done is got a high tech system. I can run this as high tech - or low tech - as I want. I can experiment. What I'm not interested in is what is the 'better' approach. I'm interested in learning. If my first attempt goes horribly wrong - who cares? I'll learn loads, and I can adjust the settings as much as I like. The important thing is not getting it right, or finding the 'solution', but having fun and enjoying along the way.

It's clear to me there are as many different ways of growing plants as there are enthusiastic, thoughtful aquarists. The real experts in this field offer their own perspectives freely via UKAPS, and whatever our own bias, we benefit from their knowledge. Cheers chaps!
 

CeeJay

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Surrey UK
Hi spider72

What an excellent response.
Nice to see the hobby taking off in other countries too.
The diagram in your post is so simple and could easily replace a thousand words, but maybe add a fourth column with light as the limiting factor ;) . Still an excellent diagram.
By the way, you do not need to apologise for your English, it is better than some Englishmen :lol:

Chris
 

CeeJay

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Surrey UK
Hi paul.in.kendal

As you have now found out from your hours of research reading on this forum, there are the two camps, but I don't feel they are conflicting. There are just two totally different sets of rules for growing plants in each.
Please don't feel there is a 'better' way, be it hi tech or low tech.
Both methods will allow plants to flourish if the basics are adhered to, the only difference will be your growth rates and maintenance regime.
Give each method a try and I'm sure you'll learn along the way, I know I did.
The only problem I've got is, it's addictive :lol: .
I now have one hi tech and 2 low tech tanks in my house :oops:. Haven't got the space for any more :lol: .
Try not to get hung up about one method being better than another. Choose the one that suits you best and enjoy the hobby, as most of us do.

Chris
 
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333
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stroud, glos
dw1305 said:
I only started posting on this forum, after a long term lurking and reading what have been a stream of brilliant posts, because I had become increasingly concerned that it had stopped being a forum where different experiences and options could be discussed, and had become a forum where you had to agree that "high nutrients, High CO2" was the answer to every question, and if you tried to post any other view your opinions were ridiculed, presumably with the intent of intimidating heterodox posters into not posting. I'm fortunate in that I'm in a position where I have the solid bed-rock of a scientific background (in a related field) and access to all the relevant scientific literature. I don't know whether I'm right or wrong, but I would suspect that the high priest of "high nutrients, High CO2" know, without a scintilla of doubt, that they are right.

I'd suggest to all members if the forum that this forum needs to remain a "broad church", and that they should keep observing what happens and keep a dose of healthy scepticism, particularly for all more "fundamentalist" posters.

cheers Darrel

i dont really agree with this.

suggesting ppl get ridiculed here for using differing methods is a little over the top i feel.

while some are strong in their convictions and wish to try and educate others and dispel some of the myths, it's not a case of ppl pushing one method only.
it does seem this forum is more geared towards "high tech" tanks, but many of the advocates of this have also a solid knowledge in other areas of the hobby.

it seems the ppl who are the real problem are the ones that have only used the "old school" methods and are blinkered to new ways of thinking, new research and new methods.
i guess this is because it would mean admitting they have been labouring under false beliefs for what could possibly a long time.

myself and a couple of others from here were banned from another forum for basically daring to suggest that high nutrient levels didn't cause algae in aquaria, it seemed the main posters at that forum had NEVER tried a higher tech approach and always limited nutrients.
they live with the algae they get and strangely enough dont seem to bother calibrating the test kits they base all of their levels on.
adding all the "nasty" things to the tank is bad because in research from river systems that's over 20 years old where some "scientist" says high nutrients cause algae must mean that for our tanks, limiting levels is the only way.
they ignore the fact that many, many ppl dose generous amounts of macros and have no problems.

for me, personally being relatively new to planted tanks learning that high nutrients didnt cause algae was to be honest something i struggled with as it went against all that i thought i knew, but being open minded and willing to take on new ideas i gave EI a try and i have no reason to change this yet.

you have access to expensive equipment, yes? as well as a scientific background in a related area?
not the average hobbiest then really?
i would think the scientific background must have compelled you to try the other methods, run some tests and experiments so you could come to your own conclusions and judgements rather than just having to take the things you read in journals and forums as gospel?

great thread tho, really enjoying following this one.
 

dw1305

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nr Bath
Hi all,
First of all, sorry to anyone I've offended, my posting was perhaps a little aggressive, and I probably should have been a little more measured. In common with all the other members I have found the postings on this forum very enlightening, and I have learnt a lot while I've been here. I would, and have, recommend this forum to any one who is interested in keeping planted aquaria, and I would encourage any-one who keeps an un-planted aquaria to add some plants, even if they keep Pacu and the plants have to be physically outside of the tank, (in a planted trickle filter or similar).

I'd always read every one of Tom Barr's words, as this part of the hobby wouldn't be in anything like as advanced as it is without his contribution. It is only by experimentation and observation that any area of science moves forward (and I do think we are firmly in the realms of science here).

I've also really enjoyed "spider72's" contribution to this post, as other people have pointed out "a picture speaks a thousand words".

Clive is correct I have never kept a high-tec tank, I also know nothing about aquascaping, very little about power filters, I've never used any of the ADA products etc. I am a low tech aquarium keeper, by both experience and inclination, if you like it's a "faith" position. I'd also like to say that (in my opinion) the level of scientific understanding, and explanation of what's actually happening to plants and tank, is very good on this forum, I don't have a problem with any of this.
I think Baron Von Bubba's final point is relevant (although probably not the rest of his posting ), I would appear to be in a position where I could do some proper experimentation, unfortunately the days when we could do research because we'd like to, or because it interests us, are long gone, it's cold hard cash that talks these days.

However if some-one of James C.s "http://www.theplantedtank.co.uk/index.htm" pedigree, agrees with the posting (and he is not the only one who's contacted me, he is just the only one to put his head over the parapet) there is surely an issue that needs addressing.

Now I really am going to return to lurking, but I'm going to keep on reading.

cheers Darrel
 
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chrisr01 said:
Hi Darrel
dw1305 said:
Now I really am going to return to lurking, but I'm going to keep on reading.
You can't lurk, I was enjoying this :lol:

Chris
I concur.
Your posts have been interesting and informative.
Its good to have differing and varied points of view and opinions.
 

plantbrain

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I think the post have shown a really good evolution on how we think about and offer help and advice to folks.
We have to be more careful in suggesting and saying more than we know and what the new person asking is really after.
They will decide on their own no matter how much experts bicker.

I think respect should be offered to a lower tech approach and the higher tech approaches(CO2 vs no CO2/Excel.Easy Carbo etc).

They both hold strong merits in their own right.
Many CO2/EI dosing types have also never kept a non CO2 over long time frames.

I would encourage them to do so.
Likewise, a simple DIY CO2 on a small tank might breed new life into an old school non CO2 approach.

Bias and one not being better than the other are tricky things.
We should be careful on either side.

Likewise, the same can be stated for Dutch styles vs Nature styles.
Sediment vs water column etc......

I started suggesting EI for practical reasons over the web, not because it was the best approach :idea: :crazy:
I like testing and experimenting, but I also like to observe and watch. A good scaper/aquarist is a better observationalist, a better worker, good motivation, and cares about their tank.

It has nothing to do with photography, techy skills, testing, general plant knowledge, science, education, debate skills etc. Those may help ......... but they imply nothing.

If I get 1st place in the ADA contest, it means I am likely a good aquarists, excellent photographer for sure, good at design, but little else. It does not mean my method is the best suited for anyone else.

Some imply that.

I know Paul and Kevin, we debated a few things(99% Paul who is honestly wicked smart).
I modified it, and Steve Dixon was the one asking the real question and testing PO4 dosing on his limited PO4 PMDD dosed aquarium. My tap water simply had high PO4(2x that of ADA's tap) so I just happen to have the missing ingredient.

Steve spotted it via testing in 1996. We verified the test kits and tried 2 more high grade test kits and known solutions.
I was just observing and adjusting based on that, not some theory. Ignorance is bliss? :idea:

It was only later I came at it from a different approach.
So I have aspects of both methods and views.

The older article I wrote is more along the lines of the PMDD +PO4, a bit more conservative and leaner than EI.
Less % water changes, more testing etc, and one of the first full methods that did not fear algae and nutrients.

Still, sediment ferts where not considered for some time again. I'd used them in the past but never had good luck(I did not use CO2 then).

It's interesting to see where all this has gone and in various countries.

I do not want to see the low folks have to feel this way ever. That's not right.

Perhaps a low tech/non CO2 sub forum would be appropriate?
It is much more sustainable in approach if you like that philosophy(I do, particularly in agriculture).

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

plantbrain

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BTW, if you read the lower part of the practical page on the krib, you'll see the same infinite series used to justify EI dosing and water changes with Fe dosing. Most, if not all the aspects of EI are not my own, they are taken from others who deserve much more credit than I. I freely give the credit, as PMDD is about 90% of what EI came from.

I just added a few ideas and things, was ignorant enough not to be fearful (or neglective enough), and used the old aquarist trick: big water changes.

Nothing new there.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

ian_m

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Eugine, the picture below is almost how I felt when starting my planted tank.....They reply was "I don't know - that's how things are done round here"....but in EI case you can ask the original monkey's (sorry Tom) as they have written about it and left it on this thing called the Internet.
MyQki.jpg
 
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