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API root tabs cloudy water


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Help .. any experience with these?

I added 4 of these to my 7.5 gallon tab and the water got very cloudy even thou I put then deep in the substrate ,

Then I read other reviews and saw that it is a common thing that the water get cloudy and a lot of angry reviews but no one said how to fix and if it will be fixed ?

anyone try those? did I ruin my water  ? 


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I'm experimenting with the API Pond Aquatic Plant Food tablets in my 30 high with a 2"-3" gravel bed and so far, so good. They're a lot cheaper than the aquarium ones, so I'm giving them a try.

White-ish cloudiness is typically a bacterial bloom, while green water is an algae bloom. I would expect whatever the cloudiness is to resolve on it's own pretty quickly. I don't think you ruined your water.

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Give it time and it should clear up on its own. It looks like the start of an algae bloom to me due to the greenish tint. The water will likely turn even greener over the next few days but ultimately clear up. Four root tabs in a 7.5 gallon tank with relatively little in the way of actively growing plants was probably too many. There aren't enough plants, or big enough plants, to use all of the nutrients available so algae is taking over. Algae blooms in an aquarium are not uncommon. As anyone who's tried to maintain a green water tank intentionally will tell you, it's not easy to keep the water green, so given time it should clear on its own. A big water change will bring down the nutrient level and start to help sort out the problem faster. Using a UV sterilizer will sort things out even more quickly. Using fewer root tabs in the future is wiser, at least until your plants are really established and growing like mad. Using fertilizer with less phosphorous can help also. Phosphorus tends to bring on algae blooms.

When you buy fertilizer you'll typically see three numbers like 10-11-12. The first number is the nitrogen, the second the phosphorus, and the third is the potassium (NPK.) For most aquarium plants the first and third numbers are the most important. Nitrogen encourages green leafy growth. Potassium encourages good root development. The phosphorus is more for flower development which isn't terribly important in an aquarium and can lead to an algae bloom. Picking an aquarium fertilizer with larger nitrogen and potassium numbers and very low phosphorous is best for the aquarium plant grower. Fertilizer for flowering plants in a garden will typically be something like a 15-30-15, while lawn fertilizer will be more like 32-0-04.  The needs of aquarium plants are more in line with lawn fertilizer.

I don't worry too much about over-fertilizing my tanks as they're jungles and it's hard to even see the substrate in some of them. If I were to get an algae bloom I'd just ignore it and it would go away on it's own over time. If you can find a local source of live daphnia they'll take great joy in eating all the algae your water can hold. Reducing the lighting level for a bit can help get the algae under control also, but in all likelihood it'll go away on its on given time. I wouldn't worry about it too much. If it bothers you, keep doing water changes, add no more fertilizer to the water, reduce the lighting and it should go away pretty quickly.

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Thank you for the long and helpful reply .


I learned my lesson 😄 luckily no fish is in the tank just yet I am just enjoying the plants .


Is there a way to make sure that it is in fact an algae bloom ?

These root tabs dissolves very quickly .

in the case that what I am seeing is a root tabs mess and not algae bloom what do you think I should do ? Will it hurt my filter ? 



Edited by Ohad
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