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PostPosted: Nov 14th, '18, 09:05 
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We have a floating raft system and I read about the deficiencies turning the squash plant leaves yellow and the photos looked just like ours. My concern is adding anything to the plants because it seems it would impact the fish. We purchased the system and they set it up using coco coir. How do I determine what won't affect our fish? We have Tilapia


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PostPosted: Nov 15th, '18, 01:15 
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So this is a floating raft system with coco coir in the net pots? I need more information about the system and pictures would help :thumbright: . Plant pictures would also help ID the deficiencies so maybe we'd have a better idea what to spray. Are you OK with inorganic fertilizers or does the suggestion need to be for organic growing?


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PostPosted: Nov 15th, '18, 03:24 
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Where in florida?


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PostPosted: Nov 26th, '18, 20:18 
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I will get more updated pictures but this is the setup we have. It was doing very well but then started to turn yellow on leaves and dying. The squash don't seem to pollinate either.

We live in Land O Lakes, FL a little north of Tampa


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PostPosted: Nov 27th, '18, 01:58 
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I am not 100% certain but this looks like it could be an iron deficiency or a combination of several nutrient deficiencies (iron, potassium and nitrogen).

1. Are you supplementing with iron and if so what kind? Iron deficiency is pretty common and the recommended form of iron is usually Fe-EDDHA.
2. What are you feeding the fish with? Poor choice of feed or too little feed can result in multiple deficiencies.
3. How many fish do you have? Not enough feed and you will get deficiencies.

As far as looking for things that won't affect the fish, these are things to try and avoid -
1. Anything that coats the surface of the water and prevents oxygen exchange, like soaps or oils - sometimes they can be used on the plants but you have to be careful (some use neem oil for example).
2. Products that contain Copper and Zinc in significant amounts. Both can be toxic to fish . Avoid runoff from galvanized roofing or pipes as this seems to cause problems after awhile.
3. Anything that causes a large spike in ammonia or nitrite. You want these to be released slowly so that nitrates are produced without getting a fish kill. If the release of ammonia or nitrites is too rapid then you wind up with dead fish.
4. Some plants produce substances that are toxic to fish and you should try to keep leaves or other plant parts from these plants out of the fish tank water.

Keep in mind that there are things you don't want in your system because you eat things that come out of it as well - like lead or any other toxics which can become a problem.

Hope this helps.


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PostPosted: Nov 27th, '18, 03:47 
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I will have to look at the food when I get home. We are not doing any type of supplement because I'm not sure what we can give them nor how to apply anything. We are very new at this as you can tell. I appreciate all suggestions and help.


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PostPosted: Nov 27th, '18, 09:59 
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From the photos it appears that your fish tank water goes straight to your raft beds

It appears you have no biofiltration or cleaning filters

Raft systems need very clean (no fish waste in suspension) the fish waste coats the plant roots and suffocates the plants

Your plant roots should be as "White" as you can get them

Rafts need lots of air in the water

If you have air stones in your raft beds keep them up a bit off the bottom as they will disturb sediment and "coat roots"

How long has the system been running with fish

Do you have a fresh water test kit and what are your readings (essential in the learning phase to help diagnose problems)

In a new system deficiencies are common as it takes time to build up a nutrient base , fruiting plants (tomatoes cucumbers ect) are very hungry plants and can quickly use up what little you have .

One of the skills we learn as we go along is managing our plants / nitrate / Ph / fish feed volume/ seasons / ect to balance our systems and avoid peaks and troughs .

I would put in some nutrients its a given in new systems that they will be low and they wont do any harm .

Iron EDDHA

Potassium sulphate

Calcium of some sort if your ph is low (under ph 6.5)

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PostPosted: Nov 27th, '18, 16:36 
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Terra wrote:
Your plant roots should be as "White" as you can get them


+1 on Terra's comment about filtration and root condition - take a look at the roots, you may have suspended solids that are coating the roots and damaging them. This is another thing that winds up causing deficiencies because even though the nutrients are in solution, the plants can't take them up.

If the roots look OK - Probably the most common deficiencies are Iron and Potassium - Using Chelated iron like the Fe-EDDHA helps with the iron, while potassium is usually added during pH adjustment (KOH (Potassium Hydroxide) or potassium bicarbonate alternated with Calcium Carbonate or CaOH (Calcium Hydroxide)). You also get a bit with seaweed additions like maxicrop or seasol.


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