Plant Spikes - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 06:25 AM Thread Starter
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i was reading in the articles about these. are they really much better than liquids? i don't really have a heavily planted tank, so i was wondering what i should be using. it was suggested to me that i use flourish, so that's what i've got. it's working well, especially for my java fern. that thing grew some roots like i've never seen! it's stuck in there and not going anywhere!

but is what i'm doing good or should i be thinking about a different type of fertalizer? i just want them to grow, and not give me gw like last time!

thanks, and sorry for all the questions tonight!


90 gallon tank
48" 65 X 4 CF lighting
injected CO2
flourite and river rock substrate
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 03:07 PM
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I have personally never used flourish so I don't know it's pro's and cons however jobes plant spikes contain most of the nutrients that you would want to add to your tank through liquid fertilizers.

The benefit of using the plant spikes rather than the liquid fertilizer is that since they are under the gravel none of these extra nutrients are available to algae. Making it very tough for algae to thrive. This is the main reason people choose to use plant spikes rather than liquid fertilizers.


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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 04:23 PM
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My opinion is a bit different when it comes to adding Jobe's Plant Spikes. Don't use them unless you have no intentions of distrubing the substrate for the next couple of months. Don't vacuum the gravel.

Furthermore, only use 1/4-1/3 of a piece and they are only needed for heavily root feeding plants like swords. If you are not injecting CO2 you don't need to use the spikes. The spikes contain nitrogen and phosphate, which are okay if your tank is limited and using lots of the two elements, however without lots of light and CO2 that not the likely scenario.

A much better choice for a non-injected tank is Root Tabs+Iron. They contain no nitrogen or phosphate to cause big algae problems like the Jobe's can. Again, the Root Tabs are only needed by plants that have a heavy root feeding system
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 08:46 PM
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Oh yes I forgot to mention the fact that you cannot disturbed the gravel for a long time! Thank you Steve!

Gosh how dumb of me. I am the one who made that mistake! :aah:

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-08-2002, 02:25 PM
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I have to concur - if you use jobes spikes and disturbe the substrate you can get a huge mess of algae which will be a PITA to put an end to.

However jobes are cheap and do make nutrients available to heavy root feeders like swords.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-08-2002, 09:08 PM
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Test your water parameters - don't guess. If your NO3 and PO4 levels are low, then you will have no problems with Jobe's sticks. I have a hard time keeping my NO3 levels above 3-4ppm in my 55g tank with 3.4wpg light and two 1g DIY yeast reactors. The Jobe's sticks help keep the Amazons from thinking and yellowing. My Rotala Indica also grows much thicker when I put a 1/2 stick every month or two, but do use caution when vacuuming gravel or replanting.

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