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Old 11-06-2012, 08:10 PM   #1 
Tikibirds
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Question Fertrlizers and stuff

I have noticed that besides root tabs they sell various other liquid items in bottle form like CO2, iron, potassium, trace elements..ect. Do I need all these things?

I have API leaf zone, Aqueon Plant something and liquid CO2 plus a pack of root tabs. It was suggested that I pick up Iron for the plants I just ordered. Do different species need different minerals and such? I don't have any difficult plants, I don't think.

Amazon Sword
Anubias
Green Foxtails
Bacopa Carolina <----hate this plant. Giant snails knock the leaves off
Cabomba

and ordered these:

Alternanthera reineckii roseafolia, colorful plant
CARDAMINE Cardamine lyrata, EASY, beginner live plant
MYRIOPHYLLUM TUBERCULATUM RED, Lush, colorful plant
Cryptocoryne parva, very easy, beautiful plant
Lilaeopsis mauritiana, MICRO SWORD, easy foreground plant

I'm giving the Myrio plant another shot. I had it and only one tiny piece survived. I left it floating and its doing GREAT. I'm wondering if it did poorly in the sand because it was lacking nutrients or because the light wasnt strong enough.

I wanted to get a bag of eco complete or whatever its called but my petco does not carry it or anything similar.
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Old 11-06-2012, 08:42 PM   #2 
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Whatever did poorly is probably doing better floating because of the better light. red plant usually need a little more iron to stay red. make sure you have a suitable light before dosing ferts.
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Old 11-06-2012, 08:57 PM   #3 
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In a lower light and lower tech tank, you will have nitrogen (nitrates+some other things from the fish mostly pooping) and phosphorous from fish food. The only thing that you will usually need is potassium, which API Leaf Zone has, and iron for red plants and root feeders, which API's fert has as well. You don't want to be dosing all of those, because in lowlight, plants won't have enough light to grow to their full potential, so they don't uptake as much. In a tank with med-high light and co2, plants need dosing or you get algae.

With lighting/co2/ferts you need to find a balance and schedule that works for you. Doing things regularly is also good for plants. If you are doing things crazy and not having a schedule, plants won't adapt and will suffer. Timers are probably the best investment for this. (If you don't have one for your light I would get one)
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Old 11-06-2012, 10:56 PM   #4 
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I know the light is a 32 watt T8 light. I should probably look into getting something better at some point.

The lights are on at almost the same time schedule every day - now that my work schedule is more normal. I think there is an extra timer that was used for X mas lights in the kitchen someplace.

I have only been using the root tabs and a little co2 every 2 or so days. And the API leaf zone is once a week - usually after a water change. I have the aqueon plant stuff as more of a backup. in case I run out of leaf zone and am out of money for a new bottle.

I know I don't have the best lighting for alot of plants but "most" of them are supposed to be low-medium light plants. If they don't work, I'll know what not to get next time :P

Ya know, when I was in Alaska - I had one of those "happy lights" that mimic the sun so that people don't get depressed due to the lack of sunlight. I kinda wish I didn't leave the stupid thing in Alaska when I left!

Last edited by Tikibirds; 11-06-2012 at 11:08 PM.
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Old 11-06-2012, 11:22 PM   #5 
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Aww the happy lights would have been perfect!
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Old 11-06-2012, 11:48 PM   #6 
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*pouts in corner*
Can I get a clip on desk lamp and use a full spectrum daylight bulb to increase the light or would that not do anything?
something like this maybe?
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Trademark-...-Lamp/21345952

Last edited by Tikibirds; 11-06-2012 at 11:54 PM.
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Old 11-07-2012, 12:15 AM   #7 
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Yeah, but finding a 6500k bulb will be a huge pain. How many gallons is the tank and what is the depth? The light you have should be fine for low light which is actually much easier to deal with. Say you get T5s, usually you need to hang them so they don't sit like 3 inches from the water to prevent algae, a single T8 can sit like an inch away and not have to worry about anything. Two T8s can give you medium light depending on the height of the tank and the reflector quality.
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Old 11-07-2012, 12:39 AM   #8 
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I can send you a 23w 6500k cfl bulb if you really cant find one...

it will be $8 shipped though...

I do recommend that you look in dollar stores. you can usually find them there...
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Old 11-07-2012, 01:29 AM   #9 
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It's a 20G long.
Some things have changed but it still pretty much looks like this


The lighting is from an Aqueon strip light.
http://www.petsmart.com/product/inde...uctId=11252589
it sits on top of a glass lid.
Quote:
Two T8s can give you medium light depending on the height of the tank and the reflector quality.
I guess I could get another strip light if need be. The inside of it is some kind of white plastic
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