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semi-planted african cichlid tank question

607 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  Diana
Is adding excel necessary? Beneficial? As the title states I have 18 mbuna cichlids in my 75 gal with the following plants : amazon sword
2 red melon sword
3-4 Alternanthera reineckii and
2 cryptocoryne

I am not worried about them eating the plants right now. I am just thinking about the plants nutrition. Is the cichlid waste (which is a ton) and root tabs enough food for the plants or should I add excel too? Also the light is a dual bulb 6500k t8 fixture. Roughly 19-20in from substrate on for 8hrs


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Fish food is a pretty good supply of most fertilizers. You can judge by the NO3 test.
Fish food does not supply enough potassium, iron or calcium.

You have two possible sources of potassium so far:

If you need to use GH booster for the fish, many of these contain potassium (Equilibrium, Barr's GH booster) as well as calcium and magnesium.

Check the tablets. If they contain potassium and iron, then I think you do not need to dose anything except carbon. Excel is good for that.
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