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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am very interested in using an inexpensive fertilizer opposed to purchasing Aqua Soil or the equivalent.

Could I use these as capsules-

http://www.amazon.com/Now-Foods-Veg...id=1350265988&sr=8-2&keywords=veggie+capsules

And then use this Osmocote Plus-

http://www.amazon.com/Scotts-Compan...279010+Osmocote+Plus+Multi+Purpose+Plant+Food

How much do I dose and can I add some crushed pellets directly to the water column for non-root feeders (such as moss, anubias)?

I've been hard-pressed to find lots of information on this topic and need your help.

Thanks- Wizzy :)


P.S. Information on other inexpensive fertilizers is welcomed.
 

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I don't know about crushing the little pellets and adding them to the water? I bought 500 empty gel caps on ebay for a few bucks and then ordered some Osmocote Plus and made my own root tabs. They work great, as good or better than anything you can buy. I'm using black diamond blasting sand, and with these my crypts and other heavy root feeders are doing great!

It's very cheap, and I have enough to last me about 20 years LOL. BTW, Scotts, the maker of Osmocote, says that the shelf life is forever. It doesn't go bad, so don't worry that it only comes in a 4.5 lb jug.

Good luck!
 

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You can add about 15 - 20 pellets per capsule. Place them deep into your substrate (they should be touching the glass) and don't go overboard with them.

I wouldn't recommend crushing them to dose your tanks.
 

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If you were to crush up Osmocote Plus and toss it into the water you would end up with ugly, nasty looking, green water. Plus it would also promote algae growth like crazy.

I personally do the exact thing you're thinking of, I add 12 grains of Osmocote Plus into -00- size capsules, and just bury them into my substrate. All of my plants are doing great, and because of the Osmocote my 2 Tiger Lotus plants will not stop growing to the top of the water. I have to trim the Tiger Lotus' once a week because if I don't my other plants get absolutely no light.

Then I also use 1/4 teaspoon of Azomite to my 55 gallon tank once a month, and it helps with adding nutrients to the water column. I have a Anubias Nana that has 8"x4" leaves on it because of the Azomite. Azomite is also shrimp safe, it's used in aquaculture farming of shrimp and fish. It creates twice the growth, at twice the pace compared to normal growth standards.

Video of the effects of Azomite in aquaculture
http://www.youtube.com/v/ZyBuWYi6ZQU


Then below is the guaranteed analysis of Azomite





DO NOT WORRY - the copper found in Azomite will NOT harm shrimp due to the age of Azomite which is around 30 million years old. You can find out more @ Azomite.com in the FAQ section. WARNING to dosing with Azomite, remember I use 1/4 teaspoon per 55 gallons of water once a month, so you need to base your dosage on mine, and how much you should use per dose. Overdosing Azomite WILL have harmful effects on your plants, as well as live stock.
 

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I tried 'em in the gelcaps, but had trouble getting them to stay buried. Ended up breaking 'em open and just placing the individual grains as needed.

Took longer, but I like that it let me get more exact placement/amounts for different plants--especially in my nano tanks where I'm dealing with much shallower substrate and smaller plants.
 

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unrated that is not true at all. i can test to the fact u can do this but it is harder due to the fact it has alot of urea so its easy to go overboard, ferts will not promote algea its a unbalanced system that does!! ive used just over 3lbs out of my container that i tried and have had great results, only time i had issues was from my own fault.

with that said its prob better for u to get them all seperate so u can adjust your lvls according to YOUR tanks needs, with premix you cant adjust. most ferts are going to cost you about the same either way you choose unless your buying bulk which 99% of everyone doesnt do, @ 3-4$ per lb depending on what ur getting really is that to much cost? probably 10-20$ per year really shouldnt be an issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You can add about 15 - 20 pellets per capsule. Place them deep into your substrate (they should be touching the glass) and don't go overboard with them.

I wouldn't recommend crushing them to dose your tanks.
My substrate is only about an inch deep... is that going to be a problem?

If you were to crush up Osmocote Plus and toss it into the water you would end up with ugly, nasty looking, green water. Plus it would also promote algae growth like crazy.

I personally do the exact thing you're thinking of, I add 12 grains of Osmocote Plus into -00- size capsules, and just bury them into my substrate. All of my plants are doing great, and because of the Osmocote my 2 Tiger Lotus plants will not stop growing to the top of the water. I have to trim the Tiger Lotus' once a week because if I don't my other plants get absolutely no light.

Then I also use 1/4 teaspoon of Azomite to my 55 gallon tank once a month, and it helps with adding nutrients to the water column. I have a Anubias Nana that has 8"x4" leaves on it because of the Azomite. Azomite is also shrimp safe, it's used in aquaculture farming of shrimp and fish. It creates twice the growth, at twice the pace compared to normal growth standards.

Video of the effects of Azomite in aquaculture
http://www.youtube.com/v/ZyBuWYi6ZQU


Then below is the guaranteed analysis of Azomite





DO NOT WORRY - the copper found in Azomite will NOT harm shrimp due to the age of Azomite which is around 30 million years old. You can find out more @ Azomite.com in the FAQ section. WARNING to dosing with Azomite, remember I use 1/4 teaspoon per 55 gallons of water once a month, so you need to base your dosage on mine, and how much you should use per dose. Overdosing Azomite WILL have harmful effects on your plants, as well as live stock.
That Azomite looks awesome, but why 12 pellets per capsule? Is that just the magic number?

I tried 'em in the gelcaps, but had trouble getting them to stay buried. Ended up breaking 'em open and just placing the individual grains as needed.

Took longer, but I like that it let me get more exact placement/amounts for different plants--especially in my nano tanks where I'm dealing with much shallower substrate and smaller plants.
I thought that the pellets would dissolve faster when not in the time release gel capsules? Would this have ill affects on my aquarium?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I don't know about crushing the little pellets and adding them to the water? I bought 500 empty gel caps on ebay for a few bucks and then ordered some Osmocote Plus and made my own root tabs. They work great, as good or better than anything you can buy. I'm using black diamond blasting sand, and with these my crypts and other heavy root feeders are doing great!

It's very cheap, and I have enough to last me about 20 years LOL. BTW, Scotts, the maker of Osmocote, says that the shelf life is forever. It doesn't go bad, so don't worry that it only comes in a 4.5 lb jug.

Good luck!
Thank you and WELCOME to the Forum :):)

unrated that is not true at all. i can test to the fact u can do this but it is harder due to the fact it has alot of urea so its easy to go overboard, ferts will not promote algea its a unbalanced system that does!! ive used just over 3lbs out of my container that i tried and have had great results, only time i had issues was from my own fault.

with that said its prob better for u to get them all seperate so u can adjust your lvls according to YOUR tanks needs, with premix you cant adjust. most ferts are going to cost you about the same either way you choose unless your buying bulk which 99% of everyone doesnt do, @ 3-4$ per lb depending on what ur getting really is that to much cost? probably 10-20$ per year really shouldnt be an issue.
So you're suggesting I purchase individual dry elements instead of using Oscmocote?

Could you explain what you are suggesting a little more?

Thanks :)
 

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Most folks that want to dose economically buy dry macros and micros from various places. The two I know of currently selling are greenleafaquariums.com and www.aquariumfertilizer.com. I have not personally ordered from either of these places as I bought a crap ton about 6 years ago from someone who no longer sells it.

Macros:
KNO3
KH2PO4
K2SO4 (debatable if even needed if dosing EI lvl KNO3)

Micro:
either
CSM+B or Miller micro plex. Take your pick.

and usually
Iron Chelate

and then only if you have really low GH
once weekly GH booster after water change (magnesium and calcium)

I've never tried Osmocote for dosing the water column, and I am sure you can make it work. It is extremely popular for use as root tabs. Many of the really really experienced folks on this site that use it for root tabs still use the above chemicals for fertilizing the water column. I am guessing the have some good rationale for this.

What I can say about the above is you can dose an a aquarium very cheaply. The dissolve well and work well. I have no complaints and plan on continuing using them.
 

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How much do I dose and can I add some crushed pellets directly to the water column for non-root feeders (such as moss, anubias)?
Don't crush them. If you want to feed water column, just put them
in a nylon bag and hang it somewhere. But how much?
I don't know. For water column I prefer dry ferts as mentioned above.
 

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Don't crush them. If you want to feed water column, just put them
in a nylon bag and hang it somewhere. But how much?
I don't know. For water column I prefer dry ferts as mentioned above.

I agree with using dry fertilizers for the water column, just because I prefer to bury osmocote into my substrate away from my fish. Plus dry fertilizers are so cheap, and are easy to dose right into the water column.

But yeah Azomite is awesome, and works really well to mineralize topsoil for an MTS tank. But I'm using SeaChem Flourite regular plant substrate mixed with Special Kitty: All Natural Kitty Litter, so I just dose 1/4 teaspoon of Azomite right into the water column, and then I stuff my DIY root tabs of osmocote plus into the substrate.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Most folks that want to dose economically buy dry macros and micros from various places. The two I know of currently selling are greenleafaquariums.com and www.aquariumfertilizer.com. I have not personally ordered from either of these places as I bought a crap ton about 6 years ago from someone who no longer sells it.

Macros:
KNO3
KH2PO4
K2SO4 (debatable if even needed if dosing EI lvl KNO3)

Micro:
either
CSM+B or Miller micro plex. Take your pick.

and usually
Iron Chelate

and then only if you have really low GH
once weekly GH booster after water change (magnesium and calcium)

I've never tried Osmocote for dosing the water column, and I am sure you can make it work. It is extremely popular for use as root tabs. Many of the really really experienced folks on this site that use it for root tabs still use the above chemicals for fertilizing the water column. I am guessing the have some good rationale for this.

What I can say about the above is you can dose an a aquarium very cheaply. The dissolve well and work well. I have no complaints and plan on continuing using them.
Don't crush them. If you want to feed water column, just put them
in a nylon bag and hang it somewhere. But how much?
I don't know. For water column I prefer dry ferts as mentioned above.
I agree with using dry fertilizers for the water column, just because I prefer to bury osmocote into my substrate away from my fish. Plus dry fertilizers are so cheap, and are easy to dose right into the water column.

But yeah Azomite is awesome, and works really well to mineralize topsoil for an MTS tank. But I'm using SeaChem Flourite regular plant substrate mixed with Special Kitty: All Natural Kitty Litter, so I just dose 1/4 teaspoon of Azomite right into the water column, and then I stuff my DIY root tabs of osmocote plus into the substrate.
Sorry it took so long to reply, but here's my question.

If I bought the Ferts and mixed them up in water (correct?), then do I still need to dose my substrate or will dosing Dry Ferts be the ONLY thing my tank needs besides light/flow.

Thanks- Wizzy :)
 

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Sorry it took so long to reply, but here's my question.

If I bought the Ferts and mixed them up in water (correct?), then do I still need to dose my substrate or will dosing Dry Ferts be the ONLY thing my tank needs besides light/flow.

Thanks- Wizzy :)

You need to dose both the water column and the substrate. Ferts in the substrate are for the heavy root plants (crypts, swords, carpet plants, and others). Dosing the water column is for stem plants and other non-root plants like Java Ferns and Anubis.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
You need to dose both the water column and the substrate. Ferts in the substrate are for the heavy root plants (crypts, swords, carpet plants, and others). Dosing the water column is for stem plants and other non-root plants like Java Ferns and Anubis.
Ok, so the Dry Ferts in combination with Oscmocote Plus would work?

Or the Azomite in combination with the Osmocote Plus would work?

How often would I need to dose these things? (probably dependent on type/how many plants right?)

How about dosing in a Low Tech (no Co2/Low light plants only anubias, moss, etc) vs High Tech (glosso, dwarf baby tears, amazon sword, etc).

:)
 

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Dose

Ok, so the Dry Ferts in combination with Oscmocote Plus would work?

Or the Azomite in combination with the Osmocote Plus would work?

How often would I need to dose these things? (probably dependent on type/how many plants right?)

How about dosing in a Low Tech (no Co2/Low light plants only anubias, moss, etc) vs High Tech (glosso, dwarf baby tears, amazon sword, etc).

:)
Hey Wizzy, with the Osmocote Plus as Tabs, all you have to do is place one gel cap filled with about 12 -14 granules every 6 cubic inch in your tank. As long as your substrate isn't fine sand you should be able to push the gel caps to the bottom of your substrate and it should be good. For the Azomite, just use the instructions described above as mentioned 1/4 teaspoon for every 55 gallons. If your sketchy of that measurements use half - 1/8. As long as you dose your water colony you should be fine.

Also if you don't wanna use Azomite, you could use Thrive, not Thrive+. I use it to dose my water colony 2 x per week for my low tech tanks and 3 x a week for my High Tech ones.

THRIVE www.nilcog.com @ $17.99 for a 500ml Bottle. Use All-in-one fertilizer.
Super concentrated
Both micro/macro nutrients
For low/high-tech setups
Easy to dose pump design
500mL treats 2500 gallons

Thrive is an easy to dose, super concentrated all-in-one liquid fertilizer. It is based on an effective EI dosing method with all essential micro and macro nutrients designed to help aquatic plants truly Thrive. It eliminates the need for multiple products to manage the planted aquarium and includes an easy to use pump design for simple spill-free dosing. GH booster may be added in cases of soft, mineral deficient water.

1 x 2mL pump per 10g will add 7ppm NO3, 1.3ppm PO4, 5ppm K, and 0.25ppm Fe

Analysis: N 3%, P 0.8%, K 9.4%, Fe 0.47%, Mg 0.062%, Cu 0.009%, B 0.023%, Co, 0.0002%, Mn 0.06%, Mo 0.0018%, Zn 0.016%


Store at or near room temperature, no refrigeration necessary
 

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I just started a tank that has a layer of eco-complete with half the area I have Oscmocote buried for comparison. It's just the second week and I already can tell the difference.

This is my first tank. I was so hurry to start without a comprehensive understanding or at least get some knowledge of substrate. I selected the eco-complete just because it has a very good picture on the bag that potentially tells me how great it can grow plants. LOL.

This is the second week since my first does. It's great. I like it. and I will does another half tank later this week. plus DIY CO2.

Just hope the water will be fine. I have a little fish in that tank to help and tell me if I'm too crazy.
 

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I just started a tank that has a layer of eco-complete with half the area I have Oscmocote buried for comparison. It's just the second week and I already can tell the difference.

This is my first tank. I was so hurry to start without a comprehensive understanding or at least get some knowledge of substrate. I selected the eco-complete just because it has a very good picture on the bag that potentially tells me how great it can grow plants. LOL.

This is the second week since my first does. It's great. I like it. and I will does another half tank later this week. plus DIY CO2.

Just hope the water will be fine. I have a little fish in that tank to help and tell me if I'm too crazy.
My current nano tank is my 5th tank where I've been hard headed and used eco complete despite all the knowledge I have gained here. It's a pain to get plants to thrive in it most of the time. However, once I again see the light and bury a bunch of osmocote plus in the substrate, both in gel capsules and individual "balls" one at a time with tweezers, my plants explode with growth in a few short weeks.

Eco Complete has little to no built in fertilizer, but has the ability to hold a lot of nutrients. So once I get the osmocote into the substrate and roots start feeding on it, my plants exploded with happiness again.
 
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