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Re: Jobes Plant sticks and Kent additives

Joe Anderson wrote:
> I've read the archives 0n these two products, but I still come away
> slightly confused.
> Jobes has been reccommended for added plant nutrition (esp. in a rich
> subtrate tank.)Yes or No?

You don't say what you mean by "rich substrate" Joe. If you mean iron
rich then you might be able to dispense with the Kent iron additive. If
you mean FERTILE rich (as in bagged soil, compost, manure, Osmocote
etc), then NO, NO, NO!! No additional fertilizer required.

If you're following the suggestions on my web page
http://home.infinet.net/teban/how-to.html then you have a "soil"
substrate which is hopefully NOT RICH at least not rich in NPK nutrients
and not rich in decomposable organic material. I recently added more
notes to clarify the problems with bagged soils (too rich).

Then, I recommend you ONLY add a substrate fertilizer such as a Jobes
Stick or a clay fertilizer ball IF you want some of your plants to grow
much larger than they are presently growing. Most plants grow quite
nicely without a lot of extra fertilization however Crypts DO grow
faster with fertilizer and so do other rooted plants. Then I would ONLY
add the fertilizer about a month or two after your aquarium has
stabilized and you have beaten any initial algae problems into
submission. BTW, expect to get quite vigorous growth with just ordinary
garden dirt from the back yard. Even this might cause green water so for
LESS fertility, you can use SUBSOIL!

Who said I was the "rich substrate guy"?? You can call me "the dirt
substrate guy" if you must. There are different approaches for differing
objectives. Beginners should stay with NOT RICH substrates. NOT RICH
dirt is OK... 

Please also check out references to "soil soup" in the APD archives and
the Krib for another way to extract low fertility, mineral soil.