Root tabs isolated to Roots not water? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-10-2015, 08:52 AM Thread Starter
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Root tabs isolated to Roots not water?

Is the idea behind root tablets that they are isolated to the root of the plants by burring it deep in the substrate?

I have some tablets with some stuff that is generally not great for a tank. It also has things which are not great for shrimp such as copper.

I am wondering if I bury it deep enough, can it basically get trapped in the substrate instead of leaching out into the water?

Thanks.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-10-2015, 09:16 AM
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They are generally used for heavy root feeder plants, but all can benefit from it if there is no other dosed ferts.

What exactly are you trying to use (brand, ingredients and %)?

The copper contained in the ferts are generally low enough concentrations that they won't harm inverts. There are plenty of people who use similar copper containing products (nutrient enriched substrate, root tabs, even CSM+B fert and most don't report any issues with their shrimp that still healthily multiply in their tanks.
Copper is even in some fish/shrimp food. Inverts actually need some copper (very little) for Hemocyanin (essentially to breathe, like Humans' Hemoglobin).

You want to try and put the root tabs deep enough so they don't pop out of the substrate and release faster into the water column (overdose). Most of the nutrients from the root tabs stay within the substrate, but some still dose seep out and can feed the water column (just a small amount though, I guess the more "loose/aerated" substrate can leech more/faster)
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-10-2015, 09:48 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WaterLife View Post
They are generally used for heavy root feeder plants, but all can benefit from it if there is no other dosed ferts.

What exactly are you trying to use (brand, ingredients and %)?

The copper contained in the ferts are generally low enough concentrations that they won't harm inverts. There are plenty of people who use similar copper containing products (nutrient enriched substrate, root tabs, even CSM+B fert and most don't report any issues with their shrimp that still healthily multiply in their tanks.
Copper is even in some fish/shrimp food. Inverts actually need some copper (very little) for Hemocyanin (essentially to breathe, like Humans' Hemoglobin).

You want to try and put the root tabs deep enough so they don't pop out of the substrate and release faster into the water column (overdose). Most of the nutrients from the root tabs stay within the substrate, but some still dose seep out and can feed the water column (just a small amount though, I guess the more "loose/aerated" substrate can leech more/faster)
API Leaf Zone for leaves and I just put a single tablet in an area with lots of plants of:

Tetra Pond LilyGro

Derived from ammonium phosphate, potassium nitrate, urea formaldehyde, manganese sulfate, ferric sulfate, zinc sulfate, copper sulfate, boric acid, sodium molybdate.

Guaranteed Analysis:
Total Nitrogen (N), 10%
Ammoniacal Nitrogen, 5.5%
Nitrate Nitrogen, 2.4%
Water Soluble Nitrogen, 1.5%
Urea Nitrogen, 0.6%
Available Phosphate (P2O5), 14%
Soluble Potash K2O, 8%
Boron (B), 0.02%
Copper (Cu), 0.05%
Water Soluble Copper (Cu), 0.05%
Iron (Fe), 0.11%
Water Soluble Iron (Fe), 0.11%
Manganese (Mn), 0.12%
Water Soluble Manganese (Mn), 0.12%
Molybdenum (Mo), 0.0006%
Zinc (Zn), 0.07%
Water Soluble Zinc (Zn), 0.07%



The Leafzone I guess is used up in a week but the Tablet say they will last a month.
I have eco-complete so I am hoping the tabs will like enhance the eco-complete which already has minerals in it. However I don't know how long it last.


My plants are:

Assorted Anubias
Tropical Fern
Java Fern "Narrow"
Green Rotala
Moss Ball Mario
Dwarf Baby Tears
Anubias NANGI
JAVA Moss
Banana plant
Golden Jenny Lysimachia Nummularia
Red Ludwigia
Ammannia[censored] reineckii 'Pink' roseafolia or gracilis
Argentine Sword Echinodorus[censored]argentinensis
Betta plant Cryptocoryne Wendtii Green
Anacharis Bunch Egeria Densa
Moneywort Bacopa monnieri


Thanks.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-10-2015, 10:40 AM
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While root tabs will help, its really not as important as most think. As long as the water is being fertilized, it will make its way to the roots.

75 Gallon Low Tech w/ Green Terror Pair
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-10-2015, 02:49 PM
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Most fertilizers are water soluble, including iron (which is sequestrated). If you place a tablet or capsule near the base of the plant, the plant only gets first dibs from the fertilizer. However, the rest will dissolve and be available throughout the water column. I prefer a slow-release fertilizer (Osmocote Plus) encapsulated in size 00 gelatin capsules.

Mike
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 10-10-2015, 09:36 PM
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Root tabs are made for heavy root feeders like swords but tend to disintegrate upon contact with water, thus entering the water column anyway. With API tabs, they will stay somewhat intact so long as you don't chip, crack or break them. It's my understanding that Seachem tabs stay together a little bit longer. The trick is to have a hole ready and be very quick about placing the tab and burying it. It's best if you have sand in your substrate, that will help keep it contained. Just be careful and note that if the tablet begins to break apart there's a good chance it will be followed by algae blooms or even something like green water if your tank can't find a place for the excess nutrients. If that happens, make a couple large water changes (~50%) and the problem will likely go away.

Something I learned recently is that root tabs tend to have a lot more nitrogen content than liquid fertilizer. I had a nitrogen deficiency in my planted tank and I supplemented it somewhat by replacing some of the root tabs that had since been depleted. Mostly though, the problem stemmed from a sudden loss of fauna.. my ramshorn snails were killed off by my assassins almost overnight. Now that my ramshorns are re-established and I have new root tabs, it's a non issue.

-mootay
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