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Hello all, I am new here and have read a lot of great things and there are so many awesome tank pics here! I am new to the planted tank and wanted to ask a question about fertilizers. I have chosen to go with the Seachem Flourish series which I have heard a lot about. Is this one of the better brands? I have the Excel for carbon and the Flourish supplement. Is it necessary to get anything more than this? Also do I still need CO2 injection with the liquid carbon? I am also using Eco-complete substrate. Thanks so much for the replies and help.
 

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Welcome to TPT!

Excel is typically used in low tech setups. There is a whole section for that here: http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/low-tech-forum/

I've been using it some of my tanks for a bit over two years with success, but there is a real limit to what it can do. It just doesn't provide enough carbon to grow many plants.

Flourish is a good source for the Micro nutrients. Trace is the other one that you may want to look at.

The amount of nutrients you add will be tied directly to the lighting and the plant growth you see.

After 2 years I finally bit the bullet and setup a pressurized system. In the long run it will be cheaper than buy 2 liters of Excel especially after the price went up 50% last year. If you do a pressurized system you will also need Nitrogen, Potassium, and Phosphorus.

It seems that many of the people on this board dose dry fertilizers since the Seachem line can get pretty expensive. I'm in the process of changing over now as my Seachem stuff runs out.
 

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I have chosen to go with the Seachem Flourish. Is this one of the better brands?
It is my favorite brand. I found if I buy 3 bottles from Dr Smiths website it cost $9 a bottle with shipping. All of my plants were failing until I got Seachem Flourish, which I thought was Excel when I purchased in a rush.
I have the Excel for carbon and the Flourish supplement. Is it necessary to get anything more than this?
That depends on the type of plants you have, your light, and minerals in the water.
Also do I still need CO2 injection with the liquid carbon?
That depends on how much light you have over the tank. Most use injected co2 or Excell. A few use both.

I am also using Eco-complete substrate.
My research has show it to be the best substrate.

Here is my comparison of liquid ferts vs dry ferts cost. Dry ferts last 4x more than liquid for me.
 

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One more question. Is it possible to overdose your system with these chem fertilizers? I have a 90 gal tank and am looking at using this chart provided by Seachem. http://www.seachem.com/support/PlantDoseChart.pdf
Seachem's dosing schedule is made for lower tech aquariums. It would be hard to OD an aquarium such as your 90g by following that chart.

I wrote a Seachem fertilizer calculator that is based on that chart that may help you. It uses Office 2003 Excel. It is the attachment at the bottom of the first post. Post four has a conversion for dry ferts to Seachem's ferts.

Sometimes DrsFosterSmith.com has the 2L containers on sale. This will save you some money. BigAls.com carries the 4L containers.

With an aquarium your size, dry ferts would be the way to go.

You didn't mention your lighting. This needs to be known to answer your question regarding if you need pressurized CO2 or not. Medium to high lighting would basically require pressurized CO2.

Excel will be very expensive for an aquarium such as yours. According to the calculator, you'll need 90 mL per week.

Flourish is used at 15 mL per week also according to the calculator. This isn't too expensive.
 
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