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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello!
I'm new to these forums although they've been my favorites to read for a long time. I have an adorable 5 gal for one betta, my first to have a cycled and healthy tank. I'm enjoying 'Clark' (he's red and blue) enormously as he's healthy and happy in his beautiful, planted tank - and doing all the things bettas do that makes them so endearing!
My question is regarding the plants in his tank. Wanting to keep it small and simple, he's the only inhabitant, and it's filled with lovely anubias which is the only thing that lives very long for me. As they survive (the plants) but hardly ever grow very much, I'd love to fertilize because I do use RO water to bring down our high ph (well water) but am afraid after reading about the chemicals in most readily available options like Flourish, etc. The last thing I want to do is kill or hurt the fish in order to improve my plants! Is there a safe organic option? The more reading I do, the more confused I become! Thanks so much for any help!!
-Kathy
 

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Seachem Flourish is supposedly a good fertilizer. I haven't tried it yet. I use Tetra Floral or something like that, but I'm not quite sure if it's actually helping my tank. The only thing that's kind of iffy is Seachem Flourish Excel for invertebrates like shrimp. But I have never heard of fertilizers bothering fish.
As for organic, people use Organic Potting Mix as soil, but I don't have experience so I can't really explain.
But anyways yea, Flourish is apparently the best. People say dry ferts are the best of best, but it seems like liquid ferts are more for beginners.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Fishkeeping, Thank you for the reply! I have also read that Flourish Excel can be harm shrimp and was prepared to order some and plan to start with it very sparingly for the betta tank. Hubby could not believe I was going to risk it because I accidentally killed two bettas :-( with an algaecide, it was meant for fish but most likely I used too much. I've heard Excel has an ingredient that controls algae even though they don't market it as such. I could be wrong though - I really do appreciate your advice! Thanks again for writing!
 

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You're welcome! From what I've heard CO2 can control algae, but I'm no expert. There's better ways for killing algea! Less light, more water changes, more plants, or dossing less fertilizers. You could also try putting a blanket over the tank to black it out! I just don't trust those chemicals..
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I don't trust them either! And thank you for the reminder about the water changes. I try to do about 20 to 25% every other week but when I'm busy sometimes it extends. Water tests have always been good so that contributes to my laziness! I'll bet if I kept to the schedule it would help with the algae. Have you ever used other fish or snails to contol it? I know I'd have to be careful about what I add with a betta.
 

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Fishkeeping, Thank you for the reply! I have also read that Flourish Excel can be harm shrimp and was prepared to order some and plan to start with it very sparingly for the betta tank. Hubby could not believe I was going to risk it because I accidentally killed two bettas :-( with an algaecide, it was meant for fish but most likely I used too much. I've heard Excel has an ingredient that controls algae even though they don't market it as such. I could be wrong though - I really do appreciate your advice! Thanks again for writing!
I've dosed my planted tank with a betta with Flourish products (Comprehensive, Excel for carbon) and he's been fine. I've actually been dosing close to double the recommended amount of Excel to deal with a few algae problems and it's still been safe.

Anubius are slow growing plants, even when fertilized (though Flourish Comprehensive isn't a complete fertilizer). What kind of light are you using for the plants, and how long is it left on for?
 

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Im too scared to use excel with my shrimp and snails LOL but many people have used it and say just be careful and if you want, dose less than what it says on the bottle. But of course this is only if you plan to keep shrimp and snails with your betta!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I've dosed my planted tank with a betta with Flourish products (Comprehensive, Excel for carbon) and he's been fine. I've actually been dosing close to double the recommended amount of Excel to deal with a few algae problems and it's still been safe.

Anubius are slow growing plants, even when fertilized (though Flourish Comprehensive isn't a complete fertilizer). What kind of light are you using for the plants, and how long is it left on for?

-Danno, thank you for your reply and information! You've given me some courage maybe to try the Flourish. It's a small tank and I just switched the bulb to a fluorescent 10 watt. Even though the tank sits on kind of a dark (no windows nearby) kitchen counter, I still fight that brown algae constantly. I've been only using the light for 7 hours a day. Maybe that's still too long?!
 

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I've dosed my planted tank with a betta with Flourish products (Comprehensive, Excel for carbon) and he's been fine. I've actually been dosing close to double the recommended amount of Excel to deal with a few algae problems and it's still been safe.

Anubius are slow growing plants, even when fertilized (though Flourish Comprehensive isn't a complete fertilizer). What kind of light are you using for the plants, and how long is it left on for?

-Danno, thank you for your reply and information! You've given me some courage maybe to try the Flourish. It's a small tank and I just switched the bulb to a fluorescent 10 watt. Even though the tank sits on kind of a dark (no windows nearby) kitchen counter, I still fight that brown algae constantly. I've been only using the light for 7 hours a day. Maybe that's still too long?!
If it's a fairly new tank, brown algae or diatoms are kind of expected from my understanding, but will go away in time.

I think 7 hours is ok, but you may want to raise the light if possible if you start having more algae problems.
 
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