What's the point of Flourite/Eco if tabs have to be added?
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:12 AM   #1
Java Moss
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Default What's the point of Flourite/Eco if tabs have to be added?

Have been googling around the web lately as I am considering once again on substrate - Flourite or Eco - and have read that many users of it strongly recommend root tabs in addition to those two substrates.

Why in the heck would Flourite or Eco be worth the trouble if it needs tabs? Supposedly, they contain the elements in Florurish tabs already.

Seems like a big waste of money if I purchase $100 worth of substrate just to keep running out every two months for a box of Flourish tabs like I did when I was growing crypts and swords in regular pet store gravel.

Somebody, please explain or clarify if I am missing something.
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:26 AM   #2
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For 40 bucks you can buy 1000 gel caps and a jug of osmocote plus and make your own root tabs way better than the flourish tabs. All substrates have their advantage and disadvantage. Eco complete is inert minus the water it's packaged in, high cec. Lets you take advantage of what you want to put into your substrate


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Old 01-17-2013, 04:09 AM   #3
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From my understanding these substrates have high CEC (cation exchange capacity), i.e. the substrate is able to hold onto ferts that you put into the water column and since the substrate is holding onto these ferts it makes your substrate more fertile. I don't think it's indefinite, but I think that it kind of acts as a buffer so if you were to not fertilize for a few days your plants wouldn't get hungry. At least that's how I understand it.

Plus I think flourite looks nice for whatever that's worth.
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:00 AM   #4
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Ive had success growing dwarf hair grass, HC, rotala and ludwigia in flourite with out the addition of ferts so I dont think it has to have tabs
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:55 AM   #5
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Thanks folks.

Spoke to a LFS owner who grows low maintenance plants and he said "Tabs are necessary as a stop gap until the roots take hold of the substrate. One box should be fine"

That sounds do-able. So, I ordered 5 bags of black flourite for the same price sold on M.D. Pick them up on Tuesday.

Hopefully it'll be okay for my dojos. I figure if regular pet store gravel doesn't bang up their barbels, then Flourite shouldn't either.
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Old 01-18-2013, 05:57 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Java Moss View Post
Thanks folks.

Spoke to a LFS owner who grows low maintenance plants and he said "Tabs are necessary as a stop gap until the roots take hold of the substrate. One box should be fine"

That sounds do-able. So, I ordered 5 bags of black flourite for the same price sold on M.D. Pick them up on Tuesday.

Hopefully it'll be okay for my dojos. I figure if regular pet store gravel doesn't bang up their barbels, then Flourite shouldn't either.
florite is cracked clay and is very sharp you should put sand or mix it with some gravel if you have barbel fish going over it, like corys



http://www.seachem.com/Products/prod.../Flourite.html
shows you whats in it. It has def helped with my plants in general. I dont use tabs i just use liquid/powder foods
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Old 01-18-2013, 09:48 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shimagoma View Post
florite is cracked clay and is very sharp you should put sand or mix it with some gravel if you have barbel fish going over it, like corys



http://www.seachem.com/Products/prod.../Flourite.html
shows you whats in it. It has def helped with my plants in general. I dont use tabs i just use liquid/powder foods
it has lots of stuff in it, about 1% is actually accessable to plants, the rest is baked into i never to be seen
i've kept delicate barbelled fish with flourite that never had an issue
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Old 01-19-2013, 07:31 PM   #8
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No you don't. First hand knowledge with having Flourite for 15 years. I've got several corys that are perfectly happy with very long barbels.

As far as why you may need additional stuff in your substrate - well, look at terrestrial plants. Do they grow in fairly clean soil or fairly messy stuff? It's pretty messy and filled with organics and other nutrients.

Flourite and others help add some of what plants need. Dose the water column + detritus and you end up having what the plants do need. If you start CO2 dosing and pushing up your light, you might need to do more, especially for heavy root feeders.

Root tabs for large swords, crypts, or other heavy root feeders is never a bad idea unless you plan to moving them around. Then it just gets the water column messy.

I've used Jobe's plant spikes for years w/ no ill effects. Even when they get pulled up - just be particular about a WC and sucking up the extra bits.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Shimagoma View Post
florite is cracked clay and is very sharp you should put sand or mix it with some gravel if you have barbel fish going over it, like corys



http://www.seachem.com/Products/prod.../Flourite.html
shows you whats in it. It has def helped with my plants in general. I dont use tabs i just use liquid/powder foods
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:31 AM   #9
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Quote:
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Hopefully it'll be okay for my dojos. I figure if regular pet store gravel doesn't bang up their barbels, then Flourite shouldn't either.
My cories have been living on fluorite for a year, always had long barbels, and unless I screw up with ammonia, they always will.
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Old 01-19-2013, 04:36 AM   #10
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My cories have been living on fluorite for a year, always had long barbels, and unless I screw up with ammonia, they always will.
hah maybe my corys are just wusses, the fourite just made mine's dull so i covered it in a layer of sand and it helped. hehe.
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Old 01-18-2013, 02:36 PM   #11
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Root tabs aren't just necessary until the plants take root. They're necessary if you want to provide nutrients to your plants throughout the life of your tank. Typically every 2-3 months you'll have to apply them. However, with a high CEC substrate, you'll likely be able to apply fewer root tabs because the substrate will absorb some nutrients and begin to release them.

Flourite is rather soft, so it should be fine for their barbels.
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Old 01-18-2013, 05:43 PM   #12
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Root tabs aren't just necessary until the plants take root. They're necessary if you want to provide nutrients to your plants throughout the life of your tank.....


"What's the point of Flourite/Eco if tabs have to be added?" That's why I use dirt.
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Old 01-18-2013, 03:16 PM   #13
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Eco-Complete has no nutrients. It has room for the storage of nutrients, though.
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Old 01-18-2013, 06:16 PM   #14
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Not necessary. Have you seen the native habitats of these fish?
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Old 01-18-2013, 10:52 PM   #15
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100 bucks for substrate? I think I will stick to 6 dollar bags of organic dirt.
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