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Don't have root tabs on hand, and I'm scared new plants will melt.


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Hi all!

I'm new to the forum and had a quick question. So, I ordered the co-op's root tabs, and I checked when my plants are coming and they're coming on Monday (7/11) and I just placed the root tab order today (7/8). I don't think they will be here for a whole week. I'm panicking because I have pogostemon stellatus, 3 crypts, and dwarf sag coming which are all heavy root feeders. This is also a new tank so there are zero nutrients from previous root tabs. It's petco sand which has no nutrients in it. What should I do?? Not give them root tabs for a week and just ride it out, float the plants in my tank, or keep them in their small plastic bag they come in? I need help. 

Edit: the crypts and dwarf sag are not in rock wool, they are bare root. The pogo is in rock wool. Also, for those living in california, how long did it take for your dry good aquarium co-op item to come? I just want an estimate to see where it might fall in the 2-8 day timeline co-op says my item will come.

Edited by moo
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I hope others chime in. I'll give you my thoughts, but take these with a grain of salt.

Plants take time to really adjust when they get shipped, moved, replanted, etc. They will naturally take a sort of "vacation" from thriving no matter what. You can probably plant them just as you normally would once they arrive. If you have no fish in the aquarium, you could try pushing a _tiny bit_ of Osmocote plus into the substrate to help. It could be unhealthy for fish though -- especially if you overdo it. If you have fish, they will be already releasing ammonia, \ pushing through the nitrogen cycle and providing natural fertilization. Your plants just need enough nutrients to survive until root tabs come. I really do not think you need to worry.

I'll add that plants may well melt no matter what. They often do when adjusting to an new environment.

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On 7/8/2023 at 9:51 PM, Fish Folk said:

I hope others chime in. I'll give you my thoughts, but take these with a grain of salt.

Plants take time to really adjust when they get shipped, moved, replanted, etc. They will naturally take a sort of "vacation" from thriving no matter what. You can probably plant them just as you normally would once they arrive. If you have no fish in the aquarium, you could try pushing a _tiny bit_ of Osmocote plus into the substrate to help. It could be unhealthy for fish though -- especially if you overdo it. If you have fish, they will be already releasing ammonia, \ pushing through the nitrogen cycle and providing natural fertilization. Your plants just need enough nutrients to survive until root tabs come. I really do not think you need to worry.

I'll add that plants may well melt no matter what. They often do when adjusting to an new environment.

I hope others chime in as well. I've never dealt with osmocote and my cycle is just starting so right now, i'm a little iffy of it. Thank you so much for the suggestion though, truly appreciate it 🙂 I am doing a fishless cycle though so no ammonia except for the fish food I am feeding. I know plants don't absorb nutrients for the first week but for some reason i thought that applied to only water column feeders. Thank you for the reassurance.

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There’s actually very few plants you could actually call heavy root feeders and the ones you have are definitely not. Root tabs are not required or necessary and column fertilizer is all that’s needed. That said @Fish Folkis correct and you have plenty of time to receive the root tabs. Also, root tabs will not fulfill the requirements of your plants and column feeding is necessary even with tabs. Order some dry or liquid fertilizer if you don’t already have it.

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On 7/8/2023 at 10:51 PM, Mmiller2001 said:

There’s actually very few plants you could actually call heavy root feeders and the ones you have are definitely not. Root tabs are not required or necessary and column fertilizer is all that’s needed. That said @Fish Folkis correct and you have plenty of time to receive the root tabs. Also, root tabs will not fulfill the requirements of your plants and column feeding is necessary even with tabs. Order some dry or liquid fertilizer if you don’t already have it.

I do have plenty of liquid fertilizer on hand so i'm good there. It feels so much better to know that they don't need the root tabs as soon as I thought. Thank you @Mmiller2001 and @Fish Folk

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On 7/9/2023 at 6:11 AM, Pepere said:

Just to add, you most likely will experience melt no matter what your substrate and water column fertilization is like as the plant converts from emersed form to submersed.  

Yep. Your crypts will definitely melt. Just trim off the dead leaves and the new ones will grow. The pogo will likely be fine. They seem rather bulletproof in my experience and transition easily. 

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