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POTASSIUM

Discussion in 'Water Chemistry' started by Big B, Apr 24, 2017.

  1. Big B

    Big B New Member

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    HELLO ALL
    IM RELATIVELY NEW TO THIS.
    I HAVE A CHOP AND FLIP IBC SYSTEM WORKING REALLY WELL MY PH IS 7 MY AMMONIA IS ZERO NITRITES ZERO AND NITRATE ZERO SO AS FAR AS IM AWARE THIS IS VERY GOOD.
    I ADD ONCE A MONTH A SCOOP OF CHELATED IRON THOUGH SOME OF MY STRAWBERRIES HAVE BURNT EDGES AROUND THE LEAVES AND THERE IS TELL TALE SIGNS OF POTASSIUM SHORTAGE FROM RESEARCH ON SOME OF THE LEAVES THAT I HAVE SEEN ONLINE. CAN ANYONE ADD TO THIS WITH SOME INFO ON HOW TO NATURALLY TEST FOR POTASSIUM AND HOW DO I CORRECT IT ? WHAT DO I USE?
    KIND REGARDS
    BIG B
     
  2. Murray

    Murray Site Admin Staff Member

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    Three things do not come into an Aquaponics system easily. Potassium, Calcium and Iron. The only low-cost way to test for potassium is by leaf observation.
    You need to add potassium. Several different types can be obtained. The least expensive and safest to use is potassium bicarbonate.
     
  3. Yabbies4me

    Yabbies4me Administrator Staff Member

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    Some pics of the whole plants, as well a few pics of the individual affected leaves, would help us to help you Big B.

    Also, with a pH of 7.0, regular additions of Iron are not usually required, and could actually see the Iron build to a toxic level in the system. Also, depending on where you got your dosing info from, many people are adding far, far more than is actually required to remedy Iron Chlorosis. How much have you been adding and to what volume of water?
     
  4. Big B

    Big B New Member

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    Thanks for your advice Murray.
     
  5. Big B

    Big B New Member

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    Hi Yabbies. I am only putting in less than a teaspoon of Iron Chelate once a month or so. It has definately made the leafy greens alot greener. I will keep in mind not adding too much.Should I buy a test Kit for this?
    Regards
    Big B
     
  6. Yabbies4me

    Yabbies4me Administrator Staff Member

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    If yours is a single IBC system, I have one as a display system in my shop and I only add a pinch (literally a pinch) every 6-8 weeks. It'll be 5 years old in May, and I've only ever added more than a pinch on 3 occasions.

    Twice because some of my plants started developing signs of Iron deficiency when the system was heavily planted with fruiting plants, and I only added 1/8th of a level teaspoon to my 500L, which solved the Iron chlorosis within days. On the third occasion I added 1/2 a level teaspoon, just out of curiosity, to see what colour the EDDHA Iron would turn the water at the widely recommended 1x level teaspoon per 1000L rate, after reading comments on forums etc.

    I would also make the suggestion that you use proper measuring spoons when adding Iron, Potassium etc. I used to use what I thought was a "regular" teaspoon, and then when I bought some proper measuring spoons, I found out there was a massive difference. The regular spoon was nearly twice the size.

    I wouldn't bother buying a testing kit for Iron, don't get hung up on measuring individual elements. As a Horticulturalist with a good deal of aquaponics experience, I can tell you it's not necessary for the average backyarder and you will end up chasing your own tail around in ever decreasing circles.
    .
     

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