DIY Fertilizer - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-21-2015, 01:59 AM Thread Starter
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DIY Fertilizer

Is there a way to make a fertilizer yourself? If all it contains is trace elements and certain nutrients, I think it shouldn't be impossible... Has anyone tried this? Thank you
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-21-2015, 02:19 AM
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Most people here probably do.

You really need to keep the trace elements (iron) away from the other ferts for it to work properly.

I currently have 6 solution bottles. N, P, K, GH, Mg, trace. For 1 main reason, I can change specific dosage rates very easily. If I need a little more or less of 1 fert, I can do so without changing the dosage rates of the other ferts.

Within the next week I'll have an Fe (iron) test kit, and will make some Fe solution so I can boost Fe if needed without increasing the other traces.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-21-2015, 02:22 AM
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Start with agricultural grade products, such as sold here... or elsewhere...

KNO3- Potassium nitrate supplies potassium and nitrogen.
KH2PO4- Potassium phosphate supplies phosphorus. It is dosed in such small amounts that the potassium almost does not count.
K2SO4- Potassium sulfate supplies potassium, and is good to have some on hand in case you have a tank that is running a bit high in NO3, but still needs the K.
Another source of potassium is potassium bicarbonate, but this also raises the KH, so may not be something you want to add on a regular basis.

Calcium can come from calcium carbonate (also raises the KH) or calcium chloride.
Magnesium can come from Epsom salt

Iron is available in several chelated forms, a bit of research to figure out which works best in your tank.

All the other traces are available in chelated form at that site, except for chelated Molybdenum.

You could get boron from boric acid (This is the source of the B in CSM+B)

I priced it out from Peters and one other site, and tried to figure out a ratio to purchase so I could come close to the elements in CSM+B and found that it would cost almost the same as ordering from one of the members here at planted tank.

The macros might be a bit cheaper if you get together with friends and order 50 pound bags, but unless you are running several thousand gallons worth of tanks there is no way you are going to need more than a pound or so of KNO3 and less KH2PO4. Might not need any K2SO4.

As a club, SFBAAPS did that- someone purchased 50lb bags of KNO3, KH2PO4, K2SO4 and shared it among the members. Took years to use it up!
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-21-2015, 02:29 AM Thread Starter
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Hmm... So it seems like making your own fertilizer is impractical... To buy all the component trace chemicals seems... problematic.

I'm wondering if there's a simpler way to do it. Perhaps grind up something and strain it? What that "something" is, I don't know...
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 06-21-2015, 05:22 AM Thread Starter
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Maybe a multivitamin pill? JK haha... Any idea, peoples?

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