Jump to content

How do I know when to add/replace root tabs?


Recommended Posts

I recently added some new stem plants, and I gave them some root tabs, but how do I know when they need more? I feel like this is probably a super basic question with an obvious answer, but I like to overthink things anyway. Is it just keeping track of plant health/growth? Anything specific to look for? Thank you!

Edited by Kelly S
Typo
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't know the answer to this but if it very thick and there are a lot of plants I would do every 6 months. Stem plants suck nutrients mostly out of the water so if I were you and to save the hassle I would just use Easy Green. But make sure if you do use root tabs, do a 2 inch by inch grid style (once it's heavily planted). If you have any swords it will eat those root tabs like crazy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi @Kelly S,

The obvious answer is when plant growth slows.  There are several different types of root tabs out there.  The ones that use Osmocote + seem to last about 3-4 months in my tanks, Seachem Tabs seem to last about 2 months in my tanks.  I have not tried the Aquarium Co-op root tabs but I would guesstimate about 2 months.  Hope this helps! -Roy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

13 minutes ago, Brandy said:

Haha, when all else fails read the instructions! Sorry I literally have NEVER read the front of the package in it's entirety until now, and am laughing primarily at myself. Fortunately I have not been using them long, and have not YET OD'ed my substrate. I so totally would have though!

And as a bonus - Tested to be Fish, Shrimp and Snail Safe! (Just on the off chance anyone would ask?)

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 2/1/2021 at 7:40 PM, Seattle_Aquarist said:

Hi @Kelly S,

The obvious answer is when plant growth slows.  There are several different types of root tabs out there.  The ones that use Osmocote + seem to last about 3-4 months in my tanks, Seachem Tabs seem to last about 2 months in my tanks.  I have not tried the Aquarium Co-op root tabs but I would guesstimate about 2 months.  Hope this helps! -Roy

Hi All,  Obviously the amount of time a root tab will last is strongly effected by the amount of plants in a tank.  The more heavily a tank is planted the quicker the nutrients are used up.  Sellers of fertilizers typically will err on the side of caution since they don't want excessive levels of nutrients to build up in a tank and create issues with fish or shrimp or start an 'algae farm'  That is why I add additional tabs when plant growth has obviously slowed.  -Roy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe it's been said above, but most stem plants are considered water column feeders meaning they are capable absorbing all the nutrients they need to thrive thru their stems and leaves from the water. 

That's not to say they don't take in nutrients thru their roots or that they won't benefit from root tabs, but you would probably be better of spending that money on a liquid fert like Easy Green. 

If you have any heavy root feeders like crypts or swords I would save the root tabs for them. 

As for how long they last the best indicator is when plant growth begins to slow down then its almost depleted. That's when you want to add more. If you wait until you notice deficiencies then the root tabs were probably depleted weeks before. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone. I recently added some new crypts, so right now I'm just glad that so far they're not melting lol. I stuck some root tabs in near the new stem plants, tiger lotus bulb, microsword, and vallisneria. I'd been slacking a bit and my existing plants were kinda starving. But nothing is huge at this point and I'm back to doing my job and testing water and using Easy Green as needed, so I'll keep an eye on growth. The ones I put in last week should last a while. The plants I already had are much happier now that I'm feeding them. (I am trainable, I promise!)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Your crypts and microsword will definitely benefit from the root tabs(my crypts eat more root tabs than my sword does). Many people find they can grow Val and tiger lotus just fine only dosing the water with ferts, but in my personal experience they do benefit from root tabs or a nutrient rich substrate. Don't worry about putting tabs under the stems use them for your other plants. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...