Fertilizing water column


Junior Poster
Jan 12, 2006
First post, just joined. Hope I'm doing this right.

Question: I just set up a new 65 gal. I used flourite as a substrate beneath gravel and have an undergravel heater beneath the flourite. I also added fertilizer tabs to the gravel. Plenty of light and CO2. I read somewhere (Think it was Chuck's) that I should not fertilize the water for about 3 weeks, until the undergravel tabs begin to take effect. This is supposed to not give any algea a chance to get started. Does this sound right to you?


Tom Barr

Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
Re: Fertilizing water column

No, this is a non issue, but many seem to miss the point entirely.

The thing you do want to do in the beginning is........add lots and lots of plants from day one. Pack the tank from the start. Add: mulm to the bottom of the gravel, heat cables really don't do anything.

Not adding enough plants is the most common mistake folks have with new tanks.

Plant tabs are minor in their effect as a rule.

So you start dosing right away, plants use nutrients as soon as they get light/CO2.

You may not need to dose as much initially, but you should certainly dose asap.

Tom Barr