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Colorblizzle 01-21-2013 01:34 PM

What ferts for a beginner
Hi all,

So I orderedy light for my tank and the only thing left to buy before plants and fish is my ferts but I'm confused what to get. Now I know you will all recommend dry ferts but I don't have the storage for it and my daughter has already drank done seachem prime :/ they have ways of getting into my stuff that I haven't figured out yet. Anyways I'm getting off topic. Other than dosing dry ferts my 2 local options are seachem flourish and aquavitro envy. My tank is a low tech tank with a finnex fugeray for light and flourite sand substrate. What would work best? Still thinking about dry ferts but I have nowhere to put the bags...

Darkblade48 01-21-2013 09:32 PM

Dry chemicals are the cheapest option. For more information on what you will need to get, take a look at my guide to planted aquariums (linked in my signature below).

Regarding storage, you definitely don't want your daughter getting her hands on them, so consider a locked box or cabinet of some sort? You could even put a steel cable (with two loops on the ends) and padlock them together, etc.

Colorblizzle 01-21-2013 09:41 PM

I know it's the cheapest option but my wife doesn't want mento use them. I already know what to get. Been planning it for months. Potassium nitrate mono potassium phosphate and trace mix. She would "appreciate it" if I used liquids I can put up on top of the fridge lol. No suggestion on flourish or envy?

Unikorn 01-21-2013 10:24 PM

couldn't you buy dry ferts and make them into a solution? one for macro and one for micro nutrients?

Colorblizzle 01-21-2013 10:40 PM

Yes and no. I could and that's what I would do but there's be alot left over

Unikorn 01-21-2013 10:47 PM

what about putting the bags of dry ferts on the top shelf of a closet? I doubt kids can get up there.

Colorblizzle 01-21-2013 10:54 PM

There's no room. Trust me I want to do dry ferts. I have more control over what my plants need and get that way. But my wife has pretty much told me no. So I have to go the other route. So I just need to know which is a BETTER product...

Wayne Dwops 01-22-2013 01:06 AM

I use Flourish..comprehensive, iron, and trace.

Colorblizzle 01-22-2013 01:09 AM comprehensive is that kinda like has all the macros in it I need for most low to medium light plants? And trace us well...trace elements then?

Darkblade48 01-22-2013 01:13 AM


Originally Posted by Colorblizzle (Post 2311809) comprehensive is that kinda like has all the macros in it I need for most low to medium light plants? And trace us well...trace elements then?

I believe comprehensive does include everything, but it is quite minimal.

You are better off using the trace mix that Seachem has, and then using their NPK line.

Pfertz makes some liquid fertilizers too.

ADA has liquid fertilizers as well.

This is assuming that there is absolutely no way to just buy the chemicals, make up the solutions, and store the excess at work/in your car/elsewhere.

To be honest, ingesting the chemicals is going to be less toxic than some of the other household chemicals that can be found....

Colorblizzle 01-22-2013 01:22 AM

Alright. Again I'm still fighting the good fight to get the dry ferts. As far as macros being minimal in flourish that's fine because its a low light low-tech tank anyways. It's only gonna have 1WPG and about 40PAR at best. Never heard if NPK or the other brand ill look into them. At my LFS the plant guru there (20+ years experience with planted tanks) told me to use CO2 and high lighting. When I told him no and that I was gonna do dry ferts but my wife won't let me he was the one that recommended flourish and aquavitro envy...he says he swears by envy. And if I want a little quicker growth I can use excel as well. That's carbon right? I plan on my 1species if fish to be otocinclus so if I initially get an algae bloom I'm not worried

Wayne Dwops 01-22-2013 02:14 AM

Be careful with Excel, it can actually make some low-light plants like anacharis melt.

Are you able to use root tabs or osmocote plus capsules? When you're just starting out I think Flourish Comprehensive and some type of substrate fertilizer is all you need for low-light, then if your plants don't seem to be thriving you can add in other things. I just started using Iron because it came with the "Plant Fundamentals Kit" Seachem sells..

And yeah, Comprehensive includes a little bit of everything but is very light on macros. The bottle recommends supplementing your supplement with their Flourish Nitrogen, Flourish Phosphorus, and Flourish Potassium for your plants NPK needs

Darkblade48 01-22-2013 02:20 AM


Originally Posted by Colorblizzle (Post 2312001)
Never heard if NPK or the other brand ill look into them.

The Seachem line is called "Seachem Nitrogen", "Seachem Phosphorus" and "Seachem Potassium" (NPK, respectively).

Colorblizzle 01-22-2013 02:22 AM

I have flourite as my substrate so I shouldn't need any other substrate ferts right? Ok so walk me they this process I'm a little confused to be honest. I already set the tank up with flourite an ac20 for filtration a 50w heater and 2 small pieces if driftwood. It's been running like that for a few weeks. I've altered the chemistry so my parameters are as follows GH-10dgh KH-16dkh I'm gonna do 50/50 RO water this will give me GH of 5 and KH of 8 I'm told this is great for planted tanks. Light comes in a few days. After that I'm gonna buy plants do I need ferts right away or let them grow on their own for a week or 2? Then add fish in about 2 weeks "silent cycle" style starting with otocinclus I'm told invade of algae from the beginning. Then wait maybe another month before adding more fish? Sound about right? And 4 hours of light a day to start miving up to 10 hours with a 4 hour "siesta" in the middle

Colorblizzle 01-22-2013 02:23 AM

Also my substrate is sloping from 1" in the front to 2" in the back roughly

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