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Old 03-01-2016, 11:06 PM   #1
zTP
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DIY Root Tabs

Hi all!

I am wanting to make my own DIY root tabs, only problem is I'm in the UK and am struggling to work out what a good alternative to Dynamite Select or Osmocote Plus is.

I have found one on Amazon which has a couple of reviews stating they used it for DIY tabs, with good results. It is called Miracle-Gro Continuous Release All Purpose Plant Food.

If someone could please be kind enough to tell me whether the below list of nutrients are a good alternative to the foods mentioned above that would be highly appreciated

EC FERTILISER
NPK(Mg) Fertiliser with micronutrients,
Blend– 17-9(4)-11(9.1) with trace elements
Nitrogen (N) total 17.0%
Nitric nitrogen (N) 7.7%
Ammonical nitrogen (N) 9.3%
Phosphorus pentoxide(P2O5) soluble in neutral ammonium
citrate and in water 9.0% (3.9%P)
Phosphorus pentoxide(P2O5) soluble in water 6.8% (3.0%P)
Potassium oxide (K2O) soluble in water 11.0% (9.1%K)
Magnesium oxide (MgO) 2.0% (1.2%Mg)
0.01% Boron water soluble
0.032% Copper (Cu); 0.022% water soluble
0.24% Total Iron (Fe); 0.02% water soluble;
0.09% chelated by EDTA
0.03% Total Manganese (Mn); 0.01% water soluble
0.012% Molybdenum (Mo) water soluble
0.009% Zinc; 0.006% water soluble
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Old 03-03-2016, 08:59 AM   #2
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Hi,

The link below I have found useful for comparison. I assume dry ferts dosing since I do that mostly but the calcs are easier as well

My plants tend to run out of potassium before anything else. So since I'm in Australia I just hunted around for slow release ferts that were as high as possible in potassium. Also I picked up some dark clay to mix in to improve the substrate.

Aquarium Nutrient Calculator
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Old 03-03-2016, 10:34 AM   #3
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Hey Delapool,

Thanks for the reply and the link! That site looks pretty useful, I appreciate that

I decided to pick up that Miracle-Gro and give it a go. It seems to have all the right nutrients after comparing it to ones others have used but whether they are in the right amounts, I'm not entirely sure.

I usually stick to various pre-mixed liquid ferts from Seachem and API root tabs but seem to be failing with my current routine as the older leaves are slowly gaining holes and decaying around the edges. The newer growth is perfect, just can't keep the older parts happy. I did a bit of research and figured it would be worth dosing a bit more potassium to see if that was the issue.

What are the signs of a potassium deficiency?
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Old 03-03-2016, 07:24 PM   #4
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That sounds like potassium to me with holes mostly within the leaves on old growth. Possibly some leaf curling as well. I have a nitrate and phosphate kit and have always had some reading using these (from fish waste / fish food) so in the last year have gone with increasing the potassium to EI levels for dosing.

I found liquid ferts just didn't provide enough for a co2 injected tank.

I'd also recommend testing for ammonia after the substrate ferts tabs have been placed. Just as a check.
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Old 03-04-2016, 01:00 PM   #5
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Yeah, that's the exact symptoms. Holes in old growth, after a while the older growth with holes will decay around the edges a few mm and there is also leaf curling.

I'm going to start EI dosing. I've had enough of expensive liquid ferts that won't do the job properly. Have ordered a Nitrate kit (lost mine around the home) and a Phosphate kit. Looked into getting a Potassium kit as well but they seem pretty overpriced.

I've been keeping an eye on Ammonia since adding the DIY tabs, nothing so far but I did only start with 2 tabs just to be safe.

Thanks for your advice and replies. Hopefully I'll be able to update this thread in a month or two with some success.
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Old 03-04-2016, 09:01 PM   #6
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DIY Root Tabs

Potassium kits are expensive

I tried api leaf zone for a bit until I realised dry ferts were easier.

I've got one that is a bit dated now and roughly found EI levels of dosing useful. The plants are a good guide if they are short on it (particularly some stem plants) and I've never come across much info saying it is a problem for fish.

Good luck! Keen to hear how it goes.
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