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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Based on Rickster's suggestion, I decided to compile a brief list of Elements commonly discussed in Planted Aquaria. Feel free to add any elements I might have missed, but post specific questions in a new topic. Discussions should only relate specifically to the Scientific Notations.

  • N: Nitrogen, a core building block for plant growth. Macronutrient.
  • P: Phosphorus, a core building block for plant growth. Macronutrient.
  • K: Potassium, a core building block for plant growth. Macronutrient.
  • NO3+: Nitrate, a common form of nitrogen available in an aquarium as a result of nitrifying bacteria breaking down ammonia.
  • NH3+: Ammonia, a basic form of nitrogen available in an aquarium, formed by fish waste.
  • NH4+: Ammonium
  • NO2: Nitrite, the second state of nitrogen in the biological cycle in an aquarium.
  • KNO3: Potassium Nitrate. Stump Remover. Readily available form of Potassium and Nitrate in salt form.
  • K2SO4: Potassium Sulfate. Good source of potassium for plant growth.
  • KCl: Potassium Chloride. Saltpeter. Potash. Good source of potassium for plant growth.
  • MgSO4: Magnesium Sulfate. Epsom Salts. Good source of magnesium for plant growth. Macronutrient.
  • KH2PO4: Potassium Phosphate (monobasic). Good source of Phosphate for plant growth.
  • CO2: Carbon Dioxide, an easily dissolved gas that is a basic building block for plant growth.
  • O2: Oxygen gas.
  • pH: Power of Hydrogen. Measure of acidity/alkalinity.
  • KH: Carbonate Hardness.
  • GH: General Hardness (mostly representing Magnesium and Calcium salts).
  • TDS: Total Dissolved Solids
  • DOC: Dissolved Organic Compounds
  • DIC: Dissolved Inorganic Compounds
  • Mg: Magnesium. Macronutrient.
  • Ca: Calcium. Macronutrient.
  • H: Hydrogen. Macronutrient.
  • O: Oxygen. Macronutrient.
  • S: Sulfur. Macronutrient.
  • Fe: Iron. Micronutrient.
  • Zn: Zinc. Micronutrient.
  • Ni: Nickel. Micronutrient.
  • Cl: Chloride. Micronutrient.
  • Cu: Copper. Micronutrient.
  • B: Boron. Micronutrient.
  • Mn: Manganese. Micronutrient.
  • Mo: Molybdenium. Micronutrient.

We'll add to the list as the thread progresses.

A link worth referencing here is:
Chuck's Planted Aquarium Pages: Calculating dosages of fertilizer elements for a planted tank.
This is a guide for dosing of several of the more popular elements dosed in a planted tank.

· Registered
160 Posts
Sam, feel free to delete this post and add/or change to top post to reflect these additions and changes.

Correction, Mg - Magnesium is a MACRO-nutrient

The Macronutrients are:

Ca - Calcium, C - Carbon, H - Hydrogen, Mg - Magnesium, N - Nitrogen, O - Oxygen, P - Phosphorus, K - Potassium, S - Sulfur

The Micronutrients are:

B - Boron, Cl - Chloride, Cu - Copper, Fe - Iron, Mn - Manganese, Mo - Molybdenum, Ni - Nickel, Zn - Zinc

Other commonly used abbreveations:

CO2, O2, H2O, NH4+ (ammonium) pH, (power of Hydrogen-the H is capital because it represents Hydrogen) KH, GH, TDS, DOC, DIC

· Registered
405 Posts
Chemical compound shorthand

Here's a list of the most commonly used compounds for dry fertilising.
Synonyms are given in brackets

Nitrate (NO3) / Nitrogen (N)
Potassium Nitrate
(Nitre / Nitric Acid Potassium Salt / Saltpeter / Vicknite / Kalii Nitras / Kaliumnitrat (German) / Niter / Nitrate Of Potash / Kaliumnitrat (Dutch) / Nitrato de potasio (Spanish) / Nitrate de potassium (French))

Calcium Nitrate (Tetrahydrate)
(Nitric acid, calcium salt, tetrahydrate / Calcium(II) nitrate, tetrahydrate (1:2:4) / Calcium dinitrate tetrahydrate / Dusicnan vapenaty)

Phosphate (PO4) / Phosphorus (P)
Monopotassium Phosphate
(Phosphoric acid, monopotassium salt / Dipotassium dihydrogenphosphate / Potassium dihydrogenorthophosphate / Potassium dihydrogen phosphate / Potassium Phosphate Monobasic / Kaliumdihydrogenorthophosphat / Dihidrogenoortofosfato de potasio (Spanish) / Dihydrogénoorthophosphate de potassium (French))

Monosodium Phosphate (2 Hydrate)

Monosodium Phosphate (Anhydrous)
(Sodium phosphate monobasic)

Disodium Phosphate (12 Hydrate)
(Sodium Phosphate Dibasic Dodecahydrate / Disodium hydrogenphosphate Dodecahydrate)

Disodium Phosphate (Anhydrous)
(Sodium Phosphate Dibasic / Dsodium phosphoric acid / Disodium hydrogenphosphate / Disodium Hydrogenphosphate / Sodium monohydrogen phosphate / Disodium Hydrogen Orthophosphate / Disodium Phosphate / Phosphoric acid, disodium salt / sodium monohydrogen phosphate (2:1:1) / dibasic sodium phosphate / disodium monohydrogen phosphate / disodium orthophosphate / DSP / soda phosphate / sodium hydrogen phosphate / Disodium Monophosphate / Disodium Monohydrogen Orthophoshate)

Dipotassium Phosphate
(Phosphoric acid, dipotassium salt / Dipotassium hydrogen orthophosphate / Dipotassium hydrogenphosphate / Potassium phosphate, dibasic / Potassium hydrogen phosphate)

(Calcium phosphate,monobasic / Phosphoric acid, monocalcium salt / Monocalcium phosphate, monohydrate / Calcium Dihydrogen Phosphate / Phosphoric acid, calcium salt (2:1), monocalcium orthophosphate / calcium superphosphate)

Potassium (K)
Potassium Sulphate

Potassium Chloride
(Potassium muriate / Dipotassium dichloride / Potassium monochloride / potash muriate / chloropotassuril / kalcorid / kalitabs / potavescent / rekawan / chlorovescent / k-contin / peter-kal / Chlorure de potassium / SPAN-K / Super K)

Hardness (GH) & Alkalinity (KH) / Magnesium (Mg) & Calcium (Ca)
Magnesium Sulphate Heptahydrate
(Epsom Salt)

Calcium Chloride
(Calcosan / Calcium Dichloride / complexometric / Calplus / Caltac / Dowflake / Liquidow / Peladow / Snomelt / Superflake Anhydrous / Cloruro de calcio (Spanish) / Chlorure de calcium (French))
Calcium Chloride Monohydrate
Calcium Chloride Dihydrate
Calcium Chloride Hexahydrate

Calcium Carbonate
(limestone, lime, marble, calcite, chalk, carbonic acid calcium salt, blackboard chalk)

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