I just started out making the move from fake/plastic plants to live plants. I am ~25% of the way there now, just having taken out some fake plants and putting in some live ones. I added in the recommended amount of Fluorish Comprehensive last night after a 50% water change to my 40 gal tank. I don't have carbon or chemical filtration in my tank. The fish seem happy. I measured the iron level and it resulted as 0. Should I add more Fluorish? What iron level is best? Or, does it matter as long as I am not adding in too much stuff (Fluorish or root tabs) and the plants look OK?
What type of plants are you putting in? If you have substrate rooted plants such as amazon swords, then they would benifit from having root tabs. As for the dosing on the Fluorish comp I would only add the recommended dosage. If you feel like your plants need it you can dose twice a week, but I would only add the amount that is correct for your tank size. Also depending on the type of water conditioner that you are using you may want to wait 24 hours before dosing your ferts. If you are using a conditioner like Prime, or another one that removes hard metals from the water, they will make your fertizler basically useless if you add it right away.
Thanks for your help. I have several anubias nana plants on a piece of wood. I have several dracea plants (I don't know the spelling) in the substrate. I don't add any conditioner to my water. My 40-gal tank's parameters 24 hours after a 50% water change are pH 6.4, GH 5, KH 0, ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate 5, phos 0, iron 0. I added in the Fluorish after I did the water change.
Iron levels in natural planted tanks seem to always be 0. The plants assimilate and store plenty of iron. If you dose flourish comprehensive, you should be fine. Your plants will grow and be healthy.
Root tabs do enhance the growth of swords and crypts, but aren't completely neccesary- buy them if you want. They definately don't hurt anything.
The test kits for iron and other minerals may not be too reliable; I had an iron one some time back and could never figure it out. Don't worry about it.
As Barb said, does Flourish according to the directions, once or twice a week at the level indicated on the label. Iron is a micro-nutrient and Flourish has the nutrients proportioned according to what plants need.
I have raised thriving plants especially swords using only Flourish, and I have no minerals in my water (GH is <1 dGH, not even up to your 5 dGH). Root ferts will help swords more, no question, but again the Flourish liquid will suffice.
Thank you for the help everyone!
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