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Testing Whats Left at end of EI Week


29 Jan 2008
Hi all,

I'm curious, I've been throwing in large amounts of ferts into my tank. Currently, I put in (not 100% sure of the formula stuff as not got the paper with me!)

Macro (3 x week)
16g MgSO4
12g KNO3
4g KH2PO4

Micro (2x week)
1g Trace
3g KSO4

I've been comparing that to others on this forum and it seems a bit heavy, considering I mainly have low dose plants (like crpyts and anubias) for my 2x 39W lights.

I would like to know how much of the ferts is left at the end of each week cos I don't want to be wasting the ferts. I don't want to leave no ferts in there, but would like to make sure I'm not wasting my money! But then I don't want to reduce my dosing and then algae starts again (argh!).

Is there any test kits? I guess I'd be able to use the a standard Nitrate kit for the Nitrate? I know they're not 100% accurate but would give me a decent indication right?


Expert/Global Moderator
11 Jul 2007
Almaty, Kazakhstan
Wrong :!:

I can't what the big deal is. Why do you care what quantity others are using? They have different lighting, different flow, different everything, even if they have identical tanks.

I mean, why would you want to use the test kit if you know they are wrong? Isn't it hard enough to solve problems even when you know what the right thing to do is and are doing it? Suppose the test kit at the end of the week tells you that your NO3 is 20PPM. What action would you take? Would you then dose less next week, knowing that the number could just as easily be in reality 5PPM? What is the source of magical power these kits have over us? It's almost like crack cocaine (shakes head in disillusionment).

I've got a better idea. Why not just slowly reduce the dosing levels unilaterally by say, 15%? Then wait 3 weeks and see what effect it has on growth. If everything is fine you can then decrease by another incremental amount. If you are doing this incrementally, any deficiencies will appear as minor algae which are easily corrected by resuming the previous levels, not full blown blooms requiring 3 day blackouts or S.W.A.T team intervention just because the test kit readings were off by a factor of 4. :idea:



13 Jul 2008
Thornhill, Egremont, Cumbria
Superman said:
What is the source of magical power these kits have over us? It's almost like crack cocaine (shakes head in disillusionment).


I love your way with words, have to say I'm sure plenty of us have felt the way Superman has too. I reduced my dosing recently after being concerned about how much I appeared to be dumping in, to see how much I could reduce it by.
The plants started to suffer and I did get a small dose of algae so levels are back where they were originally ... and they're gonna stay that way.


19 Jul 2007
Lincoln UK
I think you'll find that Crypts are actually incredibly heavy users of nutrient!!!

Forget the 'heavy root feeder' theory. Dose the water column and it takes the strain off the substrate.

The amount of Crypts you have will strip a substrate clean if they can't find their 'food' in the water column :)