Aquarium Fertilizer Basics | Planted Tank Dosing

what's up everybody this is will with

northwest aqua javi do you have a planet

tank and some of your plants are showing

signs of stunted growth weak growth

pinholes within the leaf structure

yellowing at the tips or anything of

that nature what your plants may be

experiencing is called a nutrient

deficiency and in today's video we're

going to go over the two easiest ways to

fix this problem let's jump into it


assuming that you have a good quality

plant light and decent water parameters

one thing to look out for as a cause for

poor quality or unhealthy growth would

be a lack of nutrients this could

definitely be the case especially if

you're just using a gravel substrate and

you're not dosing the water column with

any kind of fertilizer so plants need

two different types of nutrients to grow

one is known as trace elements and then

the other is known as macronutrients so

a really common fertilizer in the hobby

is known as flourish comprehensive and

this is a great fertilizer but it is a

little misleading in that it is not

actually comprehensive what this has a

high concentration of is trace elements

and what it lacks is macro nutrients so

because flourish is heavy on the trace

elements you're going to see a lot of

things in here like calcium magnesium

sulfur boron chlorine and cobalt copper

iron manganese molybdenum sodium zinc

things like that those are all great for

plants and plants do need them what this

fertilizer lacks is NPK and what that

stands for is nitrogen phosphorus and

potassium think of NPK as the essential

building blocks for your plan

I mean if you were gonna eat dinner

you're gonna need your carbs you're

going to need your protein and you're

going to need your fats that's basically

what NPK is providing to the plants the

basic building blocks to grow on the

other hand you have your trace elements

and those are all the things that are

found in floors comprehensive so think

about your trace elements as more like

those foods that you definitely need to

be healthy but you don't really get a

whole lot of on a daily basis like iron

or calcium or magnesium what I would

recommend is that you look into giving a

all-in-one fertilizer and what that

means is it's gonna have the trace

elements as well as the macronutrients

for ntk that your plants need there's a

whole lot of different brands out there

the one brand that I actually have

experience with that I really like and

would recommend is aquarium coops easy

green and this is really heavy on the

NPK so it's providing plenty of those

nutrients that your plants really need

to grow it does have all of those trace

elements you know those things that your

plants are going to need just not quite

as much of and the cool thing about this

stuff it's got instructions on it it

says one pump per 10 gallons dose once a

week for low light tanks or dosed twice

a week for medium light tanks and that's

just kind of a starting point you know

if you have a lot of light in your tank

you could go up from there if you don't

have a whole lot of light you could go

down from there I basically put one pump

of this stuff into this 20 gallon tank

every other day and that seems to to

make the bowel really grow like crazy so

that kind of covers your basic intro to

liquid fertilizers now let's go take a

look at dirty tank so straight so

another easy way to provide nutrients to

your plant is by providing it with a

good solid substrate and you can do that

either through you know specialized

planted tank substrate

but that's going to be expensive the way

that I would recommend especially if

you're just getting started out is to go

with the dirted tank route so for a

dirted tank what you're going to want to

do is provide about one inch on the very

bottom of your tank of either an organic

potting soil or a top soil and in my

experience I like to use topsoil because

it actually has less nutrients in it and

what that's going to do is help keep

your water quality clear you're not

going to have a bunch of nutrients

leaching into the water column causing

green water but being that it's topsoil

you still are going to be providing your

plants with plenty of nutrients I almost

forgot when you do have a dirted

substrate what you're going to want to

do is once again have one-inch organic

potting soil or topsoil and then the top

inch you're going to want to use just

your standard gravel and what that's

going to do is is cap that soil and

prevent it from getting into the water

column making it look like a muddy mess

that's gonna be really key to a

successful dirted tank the one caveat to

using a dirted substrate is that you're

not gonna have a lot of nutrients within

the water column necessarily so the

plants that you're going to want to use

for a dirted tank are gonna be those

that feed at their roots and in this

example we have predominantly a bed of

dwarf sag and this stuff it basically

gets 100 percent of its nutrients from

its roots so having a dirted tank

substrate works great aside from the

dwarf Sajan here I do have duck weed as

well as java fern and those are two

really easy to grow plants and I put

them in there actually to suck out any

of those nutrients that aren't being

taken up by the dwarf said this tank has

no filter in it whatsoever so having

that duck weed in there really helps to

suck out any of those excess nutrients

and provide an excellent clean habitat

for my fish to grow and thrive in so

that's it for today's video guys to

summarize you got two easy ways to

fertilize your tank number one you can

use an all-in-one liquid fertilizer and

this will provide all of those trace

elements as well as macronutrients that

your plants need to thrive and then the

other option is just to go ahead and use

a dirted tank substrate and that's going

to provide all the nutrients that your

plants need as well if you guys like

this video do me a favor like and

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