The Best Aquarium Plant Fertilizers to Promote Healthy Aquatic Plants

There are so many things to take care of when you keep a fish tank. And, one of these is buying fertilizers for your live aquatic plants. Your fish are not the only valuable creatures that you need to look after inside the tank; if you hope to make your planted tank look more natural and impressive, then it is a must to invest in the best aquarium plant fertilizers.

Needless to say, having the right fertilizer will considerably help you in ending up with stunningly green fish tank plants. Keep in mind that relying on the kind of fertilizer you get to utilize; will always affect how the fish tank plants will look inside the aquarium.

The good news is that there are innumerable options on the market nowadays and you can select from top-notch aquarium plant fertilizers to ensure that your fish tank plants are properly maintained. With the detailed product reviews in this article, you can definitely pick the highly-rated aquarium plant fertilizers that could help make your plants thrive well inside your fish tank.

Choosing aquatic plant fertilizers can become a breeze if you understand the vital buying factors. However, you should understand you shouldn’t just willy-nilly select any option with highly rich or tanked-up nutrition. First, you need to have an insight into important factors that’ll affect the product and its performance.

  • Quality: Buyers should research potential options labels to see whether it’s safe for fish and aquatic plants. You’ll also want to check if the macronutrients and micronutrients are sufficient to function as plant food for aquarium plants.
  • Type: Most aquarium plant fertilizer falls into one of three types: pre-packed aquarium fertilizer substrate, liquid aquarium fertilizer, or aquarium fertilizer root tabs (root feeding). Therefore, it’s vital to understand the Substrate Vs. Root tabs Vs. Liquid fertilizer debate. Once you do, choosing one perfect for your particular tank setup becomes effortless.
  • Quantity: Purchasing fertilizer without understanding how much is needed for your tank doesn’t make much sense. The type and number of plants inside your fish tank will have a massive role in this determination.

Whether you’re a pro or still a newbie, this article will absolutely be a very useful guide for you!

Best Overall

API Leaf Zone Aquarium Plant Food

API Leaf Zone Plant Food

✔ Highly recommended for leafy type of plants
✔ Speedy absorption in freshwater fish tank plants
✔ Comes with vital nutrients


Premium Choice


Seachem Flourish

✔ Highly recommended all-around aquarium fertilizer
✔ Certified safe to use for different fish species
✔ Improving plant’s strength


Editor’s Choice


Thrive Aquarium Plant Fertilizer

✔ For both low and high-tech aquarium setups
✔ Helps inhibit algae accumulation
✔ Provide plants with all vital macronutrients


Top-Quality Aquarium Plant Fertilizer Reviews 2023

1. API Leaf Zone Aquarium Plant Food

API Leaf Zone Aquarium Plant Food

If you hope to purchase an aquarium liquid fertilizer that is affordable and good enough to take care of your fish tank plants, then API Leaf Zone is a great choice. This size is big enough and as a matter of fact, 5 ml is already sufficient to manage a 10-gallon fish tank.

If you have leafy types of plants, then this is highly recommended for you. This fertilizer is specifically formulated to ensure fast absorption in freshwater aquarium plants. It works wonderfully in sustaining very healthy and colorful leaves. Hence, your fish tank will look even more impressive.

In the same way, it can provide a significant amount of iron and potassium that your fish tank plants need. So, this does wonders when it comes to inhibiting the potentiality of decaying plants in the tank. Unlike other brands out there, this won’t force you to spend lavishly just to look after your fish tank plants.

On the other hand, the weak sides of this fish tank fertilizer are that it is only capable of providing a limited amount of nutrients as it merely focuses on iron and potassium and does not include other vital minerals. And, the aquarium plants are more likely to die if you happen to exceed the recommended dosage. Keep in mind that adhering to the dosage instructions is a must for this product.

  • Helps stimulate vigorous and colorful leaves
  • Especially formulated for speedy absorption in freshwater fish tank plants
  • Highly recommended for leafy type of plants
  • Comes with vital nutrients such as potassium and iron
  • Aids in warding off decaying and dwindling leaves
  • Does not provide all the needed nutrients
  • Too much dosage may cause plants to die
Overall, this fish tank plant fertilizer is a nice product to try. It is certainly quite affordable and superbly provides some important nutrients such as iron and potassium. But, please be reminded that it matters to ensure that you provide the directed dosage because an overdose of this fertilizer may cause the fish tank plants to dwindle and eventually die.

2. Seachem Flourish


Are you currently searching for top-quality aquarium plant foods? Seachem Flourish has actually been tested and proven to be harmless for all fish tank dwellers. Once you regularly add the directed dosage inside the fish tank, you will notice that your aquarium plants start to look and grow prosperously.

For a fact, this is superiorly recommended to any fish tank keepers who are still new in the hobby. Aside from its convenience and ease of use, this is definitely a safe solution that is worth considering. If you wish to see your aquarium plants look stunning and rapidly growing roots and capable of providing amazing colors inside the tank, then this aquarium plant fertilizer shouldn’t be missed.

In like manner, it does not affect the fish tank’s pH balance if utilized as directed. It is worth considering that this is indispensable to any fish tank owners who have pH-sensitive plants or keep live fish in their aquariums.

Nevertheless, you need to be extra careful when adding the recommended amount because too much use of this fish tank plant fertilizer would only encourage massive algae proliferation inside the aquarium. Also, the caps on bottles have issues of being loose so leak concerns are to be expected.

  • Highly recommended all-around aquarium fertilizer for micronutrients
  • Certified safe to use for different fish species
  • Won’t in any way have negative effects in fish tank water chemistry
  • Does a good job at improving plant’s strength whenever they’re about to dwindle
  • Superb at regulating healthy fish tank plant’s growth
  • Comes with slightly loose caps on bottles
  • Too much use may urge massive algae bloom

In a nutshell, this is a strikingly effective fish tank plant fertilizer that is ideal for both newbies and pros in the aquarium hobby field. Moreover, it is efficient when setting up a new aquarium, wintering your pond plants indoors or you wish to add huge amounts of plants in a short span of time- as you can see, this makes it a perfect option worth trying. But, only follow the recommended dosage otherwise considerable algae buildup may be expected.

3. Thrive Aquarium Plant Fertilizer


Would you like to invest in an effective planted tank fertilizer for your live aquatic plants? If you are really serious about spoiling your aquarium plants with essential nutrients, then Thrive Aquarium Plant Fertilizer will help you achieve that. Once this is properly used, you can impede the buildup of algae so you can ensure that your fish tank inhabitants are kept safe and healthy at all costs.

More than that, by simply providing your fish tank plants with complete nutrients, they can grow healthily, fresher and look great. This size is big enough to medicate a total of 2,500 gallons of tank water and adding it to the aquarium is made easier and this is made possible by its user-friendly pump bottle.

Still and all, a couple of the negative sides of this aquarium plant liquid fertilizer are its slightly expensive price tag. Besides, it also has the possibility to urge plenty of nitrates into the tanks’ water column particularly if you frequently exceed the directed dosage. That said, you need to use this aquarium plant fertilizer with caution to avoid such occurrences from happening. You also can find other nitrate remover solutions if needed.

  • Can provide plants with all vital macronutrients and micronutrients
  • Highly recommended for both low and high-tech aquarium setups
  • Comes in highly-concentrated liquid fish plant fertilizer formula
  • Capable of medicating large fish tanks without hassle
  • Helps inhibit algae accumulation inside the aquarium
  • Has the tendency to introduce higher nitrates level into the water column
  • Slightly pricey as compared to other brands
Over and above, this is the best bang for the money in that it is touted as one of the most user-friendly aquarium plant fertilizers available on the market these days. While it comes with a slightly costly selling price, it is worth the money considering its ease of use, effectiveness and safety for your fish tank occupants. This is one great approach to keep your live aquatic plants successfully thriving and this can be utilized best in both low and high-tech aquarium setups.

4. Seachem Flourish Tabs Growth Supplement


Being renowned as one of the A1 aquarium plant nutrients products, Seachem Flourish Tabs Growth Supplement is not a waste of money to use. This is an efficient means to sustain blooming fish tank plants without the hassle of utilizing liquid supplements. It is especially ideal for regular application in denser formations around plants that come in a bigger size.

Bear in mind that it is critical to put the tablet supplement deep so as to get to the plant roots and so it won’t be lost in the water column. Not to mention, this is the product to go if you hope to restore micronutrient loss in the substrate.

Meanwhile, this product requires you to save some more money before you can purchase it since it absolutely comes with an overpriced price tag. This means that it is not for those who are searching for pocket-friendly aquarium plant foods. In line with this, this also comes with marginally acidic properties. As you can see, these are just a few of the flaws that you need to be aware of.

  • Highly effective growth stimulating tablets for plant roots
  • Capable of providing a number of health benefits to fish tank plants
  • Does not change the tank water’s pH levels
  • Loaded with essential nutrients and vitamins that live aquatic plants need
  • Much more economical to use as compared to liquid aquarium fertilizers
  • Comes with slightly acidic properties
  • Priced expensively
To sum things up, this is definitely a much more cost-effective option to buy as compared to liquid aquarium plant fertilizers out there. It may be true that the upfront cost is a little more pricey than liquid fish tank plant fertilizers, but, in reality, this helps you set aside some dollars and a good amount of time. Once added to the tank, the aquatic plants will begin to grow at a rapid rate and you don’t need to worry about their health and safety. This is seriously the kind of tabs that works miraculously.

5. Thrive+ All-in-One Liquid Fertilizer


When reading planted aquarium fertilizer guide, you will learn that it is a must to choose the safest and the most effective fertilizer that could take better care of your aquarium plants. This is an outstanding all-in-one dosing fertilizer that can provide the required nutrients for your most treasured aquatic plants.

Fortunately, it is quite easy just to obtain everything you specifically require in a single bottle. And, this is what makes this product something worthy of spending for. You will witness for yourself that this plant food is the top-tier alternative that you could utilize for highly demanding planted tanks. It is no sweat to administer since it comes with a pump bottle that is user-friendly and convenient to utilize.

To use this product, you only have to pump it in your aquarium and you are good to go! In just a single week, you can observe that your fish tank plants are displaying more color and they grow and respond positively. This way, you can start having a magnificent sight inside the aquarium.

At any rate, if you are utilizing a substrate such as ADA soil, this may not be an impeccable alternative to consider buying because an overabundance of nutrients may not be good as well. And, do not exceed the directed dosage if you do not want to experience negative outcomes.

  • Designed with very convenient pump bottle that’s user-friendly
  • Recognized for being a highly concentrated fish tank plant fertilizer
  • Provides very clear-cut dosage instructions
  • Nutrient-packed aquarium plant food ideal for demanding aquatic plants
  • Can guarantee healthy and vibrant-colored aquarium plants
  • Not ideal if you’re utilizing a substrate such as ADA soil
  • Overdose may produce negative results
In conclusion, this product is easy to use and it’s a remarkable option that works like a charm. This is worth every single penny you pay for it in that it can guarantee that you won’t encounter dwindling or dying plants anymore and you can finally say goodbye to rapid algae growth inside the fish tank. Plus, you’ll surely realize that this is the most excellent fish tank plant fertilizer that you could ever utilize.

6. API ROOT TABS Aquarium Plant Fertilizer


If you are dealing with poor root systems on your fish tank plants, then the right dry aquarium fertilizer for you to purchase is none other than API Root Tabs. Such a product is a first-rate option to get live aquatic plants to build vigorous root systems.

It is worth knowing that it already contains the most vital minerals and vitamins that every aquarium plant needs like potassium, carbon and iron. These vitamins and minerals are used up over time and must be replenished for aquatic plants to grow healthily.

Needless to say, stimulating a strong and healthy root development for green plants residing in your fish tank may not always be a piece-of-cake task to deal with. In addition to this, the problem does not need to be aggravated if you choose the right fertilizer for them. Hence, if you wish to sustain colorful and fresh aquarium plants inside your tank, then it is high time to give this product a try.

Be that as it may, the only drawbacks that are to be expected when using this aquarium plant fertilizer are its capability to dissolve more rapidly once added to the tank water. Aside from this, it is more likely to produce slight white discoloration in the tank, particularly after first use. But, it is still a product worth purchasing for your aquarium plants to thrive well.

  • Assists new aquarium plants to enjoy vigorous start and help them to bloom continuously
  • Stimulates healthy root development for luscious plants in freshwater fish tanks
  • Comes with the most valuable nutrients like carbon, potassium as well as iron
  • Aids make aquarium plants look greener, fresher and more colorful
  • Harmless to use for tropical fish
  • Instantly starts dissolving when added into the water
  • May produce a little white discoloration after first use
All things pondered; if you are presently keeping tropical fish in your fish tank, then this is a gilt-edge choice since it is harmless for this type of fish species. More than that, this is particularly recommended for use in freshwater-planted fish tanks. With many great features, this is a worthwhile investment for you.

7. Aqueon Aquarium Plant Food


There is no need to go through hard times just to get the right aquarium fertilizer for you. Aqueon Aquarium Plant Food will bring a huge change to your fish tank once you add this to your aquatic plants. Wouldn’t it be a great sight to behold if your fish and aquarium plants were all healthy and flourishing inside the aquarium? Sure it is!

If you wish your fish tank plants to look more alive and vibrant in color, then you’ve got to invest in an aquarium plant fertilizer that can help them stay green, fresh and in good condition. If you utilize this product with the indicated dosage per week, then you’ll start to witness the big difference it could do to your plants.

It is nice to know that a single bottle of this fertilizer goes a long way, so it is somehow budget-friendly and absolutely not a waste of your hard-earned money.

For all that, this product may not be sufficient enough for harder plants. In the same way, if you happen to go beyond the directed dosage, then there is a greater likelihood that there would be immense algae growth inside the fish tank.

  • Capable of providing the required amount of nutrients for freshwater plants
  • Dosage can be easily modified hinging on the amount of plants and preferred growth rate
  • Serves as a very practical aid for aquatic plants to thrive auspiciously inside the aquarium
  • Harmless to use for all aquarium inhabitants
  • Formulated with kelp extracts that is specifically ideal for stimulating healthy root development
  • May not be adequate enough for harder plants
  • Incorrect dosage amount may result to algae buildup
In summary, you can end your search now regarding the appropriate aquarium plant fertilizer for you. Aqueon Aquarium Plant Food is packed with the essential nutrients that your fish tank plant needs. It is easy to use, works efficiently and safely for all your aquarium dwellers.

8. Aquarium Plant Root Fertilizer Tabs


It is significant to note that Aquarium Plant Root Fertilizer Tabs are cutting-edge solutions if you are serious in keeping your aquarium plants healthy, safe, fresher and greener while thriving inside the fish tank. What’s so interesting about these tabs is that they come in a square form which makes them plain sailing to plant unlike other products out there.

Indeed, they do not come with a gel cap that only tends to float in the tank water. Their well-balanced blend of slow release fertilizers is especially awesome at providing the vital nutrients that fish tank plants precisely require whenever and wherever they need them. You can utilize them in aquatic substrates and gravel beds.

All the same, the tabs are too soft which makes them easily crumbled. And, the bag and the tablets are certainly tinier in size than advertised.

  • Preferred for its ease and convenience of use
  • Can ensure a well-balanced combination of slow release fertilizers whenever and wherever needed
  • Does not come with very pricey selling cost
  • Ideal for aquatic substrate and gravel bed to provide live aquatic plants with required vitamins and minerals
  • Does not soften, does not make the water cloudy and no mess at all
  • Too soft that makes them fall apart quite easily
  • Bag and tabs are absolutely smaller than expected
To conclude, this fish tank plant food is a good catch to buy. It is not as expensive and loaded with amazing features as you can ever hope for a product. It is tested and proven to be effective, safe to use and administering it is smooth sailing to execute.

9. Liquid NPK+M – Aquarium Liquid Fertilizer


This liquid fertilizer is highly recommended if you opt for a highly concentrated aquarium plant fertilizer that won’t let you down in maintaining healthy, vibrant and active live aquatic plants inside your tank. If you prefer, you may consider altering to other dosing techniques that you find easier when administering it.

As compared to other brands available on the market at present, this won’t hurt your pocket because it is not priced expensively. The good news is that its affordability does not mean compromised quality. As a matter of fact, it is the other way around.

In spite of the must-love features of this product, the weak points that you need to keep an eye on include the fact that it runs out quite fast which means you need to buy again and again. Also, the product’s bottle seems to be more susceptible to being moldy.

  • Can be modified to other dosing methods
  • Highly effective and concentrated fish tank plant fertilizer
  • Comes in a budget-friendly price tag
  • Capable of medicating a total of 2,500 gallons of tank water
  • Can solve your weakening aquatic plants problems
  • Bottle is prone to be moldy
  • Runs out quite fast
Bringing up the rear, this aquarium plant food won’t fail you in your purpose of ensuring the good health of your fish tank plants. It is not that costly to purchase and it definitely fits the bill. Administering it is made easier and you can even choose your preferred dosing method. It is harmless to use and can already medicate a total of 2,500 gallons of tank water.

Outdated Products

Greenpro Fertilizer Tablets (Outdated)


This product is a great deal to splurge in because it is the type of formula that is specifically made for all kinds of aquatic plants residing in the aquarium. Best of all, it can serve a very dependable food source to keep your most valued aquatic plants looking their best and remain in good condition at all times.

Besides, they can promise fast results and this won’t end with regular use of it. They are loaded with the vitamins and minerals that your plants need in order to survive and maintain their green and fresh appearance. This way, there is no need for you to be upset about not being able to provide the required nutrients for your aquatic plants.

Regardless, once added to the tank, these fertilizer tablets can transform the tank water into a somewhat whitish substance. And, it also comes with the potentiality to increase the levels of ammonia into the tank water. So, beware of the dosage you are adding; see to it to follow the dosage instructions.

  • Can deliver speedy and continuous results
  • Packed with active nutrients that help keep aquatic plants vigorous and more vibrant
  • Serves as a reliable food source for all sorts of aquatic plants living inside the tank
  • Certified harmless to use for all your aquatic pets
  • Not trouble to administer and maintain
  • Makes the tank water appear like whitish substance
  • Has the tendency to augment ammonia levels in the tank
All features taken into account, there is no doubt that this product is a must-buy. With a reasonable price and beneficial features, you have no reason why you’ll refuse to provide this to your aquatic plants to ensure their healthy growth.

Luffy Marimo Fertilizer (Outdated)


To boot, shopping for the to-rated aquarium plant food these days does not have to be very daunting. Luffy Marimo Fertilizer is a nice alternative to pay for if you want to guarantee efficient and cost-effective fertilizer for your live aquatic plants thriving in your fish tank. Without a doubt, this is a fabulous way of keeping lush green plants in your aquarium.

Likewise, this marimo balls fertilizer is quite easy to regulate especially in terms of the number of drops that come out of the bottle. This is highly renowned for having a wonderful mild solution that is primarily helpful in keeping your marimo balls in good condition, greener and fluffier.

Apart from that, it is also loaded with plenty of micronutrients consisting of minerals and vitamins that you can only find in natural lake water. This is economical to use in that it is super concentrated so it can last for longer periods of usage. As you can see, this is very convenient and comes with great value.

However, this product comes with a very poorly made container that gets easily broken or damaged. Furthermore, you may need to wait for some time to experience the positive outcomes that you are aiming for. These are just two of the downsides that you have to watch out for regarding this aquarium plant fertilizer.

  • Capable of making your marimo balls become fluffier and much larger in size
  • Does a good job at helping marimos grow healthier and greener
  • Packed with valuable nutrients for your marimo balls to thrive well
  • Risk-free to utilize for all types of aquatic creatures
  • No struggle to maintain
  • Positive results may take a while for you to see
  • Comes with very poor made container
In general, this fish tank plant fertilizer is a noteworthy alternative if you are searching for a product that works great in germinating fish tank seeds. Its ease of use, cost-effectiveness and nutrient-filled formulation surely make it an extraordinary aquarium marimo balls fertilizer product that you can fully rely on. You can rest assured that you are getting your real money’s worth.

Glosso Factory All in one Planted Aquarium Fertilizer (Outdated)


Are you still having second thoughts about the top-quality liquid fertilizer for aquarium plants? Then, why not forget that confusion and opt for Glosso Factory All in one Planted Aquarium Fertilizer instead?

This product works like magic when it comes to speed up the plant growth process inside your fish tank. This is an ideal pick for those who keep large and low-tech planted tanks that shelter floating and rooted types of aquarium plants. In just a couple of weeks, you can start noticing some healthy changes in your plants and this will certainly add an appealing look to your entire tank.

Furthermore, this may even help dwindling fish tank plants regain their strength and be healthy and vigorous again. Provided that you stringently adhere to the dosage recommendations, this won’t cause any harm to your fish tank occupants. Dosing is quite easy and you’ll love the fact that looking after your aquarium plants is not tedious and messy at all.

Notwithstanding, this aquarium plant fertilizer is designed with a brittle nozzle that easily gets broken. Additionally, it may not be good to use with a dosing pump. Other than these downsides, this is a top-rated product that you can consider buying.

  • Known for its ease of use and clear-cut dosage instructions
  • Can provide aquarium plants with vital nutrients especially required for auspicious growth
  • Highly quality and super concentrated all-in-one fish tank plant fertilizer
  • Capable of guaranteeing well-balanced formula with macronutrients and micronutrients
  • Specifically useful for low-tech tanks with invertebrates
  • Comes with brittle nozzle that breaks off instantly
  • Might not be ideal to utilize with a dosing pump
By and large, this fish tank plant fertilizer is a must-have for devoted aquarium owners. This works exceptionally in keeping your live aquatic plants in good condition all the time. This bottle is easy to grab and use, you only need to shake it well and execute the directed number of pumps and you’re done. It is well-recognized for its well-balanced formulation and it does a sterling job at providing all valuable macro and micronutrients for your most cherished aquatic plants.

What To Look For When Buying An Aquarium Safe Fertilizer


There are some vital aspects for you to contemplate on before you make the final decision when it comes to the right type of fertilizer to use in your fish tank. And, a few of these considerations include the following:

Do they contain macronutrients and micronutrients? Nitrogen, phosphate and potassium are undoubtedly the most valuable components of a fish tank fertilizer since huge amounts is especially required. What is more, the other vital macronutrients consist of sulfur, magnesium and calcium.

Hence, it is practical to check the label of the fertilizer product you are planning to buy to inspect if this is safe to use for your live aquatic plants and if it contains the required macronutrients.

On the other hand, please be guided that micronutrients are vital components too, but as compared to macronutrients, small amounts of these are already enough. Since micronutrients are already present in tap water, there is no need to add more of them.

Adding plant fertilizers won’t bring about algae growth. Some aquarium owners believe that fertilizers are the sole reason for algae proliferation. For fact, if you do not add fertilizer, your fish tank plants will be deprived of the indispensable components required for proper growth.

If your aquarium plants start to perform weakly, then there is a greater possibility of algae buildup. So, there is no reason for you to think twice about whether to buy aquarium-safe fertilizers or not now that you know the potential risk of not adding fertilizer to your fish tank plants.

If you aren’t able to provide the necessary amount of plant food that your plants need, it is well hard for them to grow healthily and they are more likely to produce flimsy, spindly stems that come with skimpy and pale leaves. And, they would be more apt to die.

The required quantity. This shall rely on the number and type of fish tank plants you currently grow, how intense your aquarium lighting is and the number of fish you keep in the tank.

Other Important Factors To Consider


What is an aquarium plant fertilizer? How does it work?

Plant fertilizers are regarded as plant foods in that they contain macronutrients and micronutrients that live aquatic plants need in order to thrive successfully inside the tank. These are generally available as a substrate or in liquid form. The former typically lasts longer, while, the latter needs to be dosed more periodically. And, because there are really no evident distinctions in terms of their efficiency, aquarium owners can choose which one to get to feed their fish tank plants.

In line with this, if you prefer, fertilizers can be made right at your own home or you can buy one as these are readily available on the market. Basically, adding plant foods to encourage aquarium plant growth must merely be considered in moderate to heavily planted fish tanks.

Fertilizers come with a number of indispensable components required for the fish tank plant growth. They contain the most vital macronutrients that provide the necessary strength and health for your aquatic plants to grow prosperously. The work of calcium is to aid in imparting the plant’s colors. To put simply, this greatly helps in maintaining fresher-looking and greener plants inside the tank.

Various forms of fertilizers whether homemade or commercialized do a very substantial job at establishing the foundation for a well-balanced system and fascinating fish tank growth.

What are the different types of aquarium plant fertilizers?

  • Pre-packed Substrates

These types are special soils that are primarily designed for fish tank use. There is only a slight need to add additional fertilizers since these already contain the ingredients that root-feeding plants especially require. These are ideal for plants that are heavy root feeders such as Dwarf Baby Tears, Amazon Sword, Dwarf Hair Grass, Sagittaria, Cryptocoryne and Vallisneria.

Therefore, if you do not prefer to add heavy root feeders to your aquarium, it is not necessary to utilize this type of fertilizer. If you are considering adding this to your current tank, it could put off adequate ammonia to exterminate all of your fish. In such manner, it is necessary to keep your fish in a separate tank when you need to add the substrate again every few years.

  • Liquid Aquarium Fertilizers

These types generally dissolved in water when you pour them into the fish tank water. Moreover, they are highly recommended for plants that directly feed from the water column such as Anubias, Java Fern, African Water Fern, Brazilian Pennywort and Mosses.

  • Aquarium Fertilizer Root Tabs

These are known for being tiny pieces of compressed plant foods. They are especially intended to be utilized if you have an inert substrate in your aquarium, such as sand or gravel.

When using this, carefully bury the root tab down in the gravel, in a sphere surrounding the plants that feed from the roots. Afterwards, you will see that the tans gradually dissolve and the plant root consumes the nutrients they hold off.

Fundamentally, this is a stunning alternative if you wish to keep heavy root feeders; nonetheless, you do not prefer the struggle and cost of a pre-packed substrate.

Why do you need aquarium plant food? (Benefits)

As mentioned previously, fertilizers do wonders in providing the vital nutrients that live aquatic plants need in order to grow auspiciously. You cannot just leave your plants alone and let them live on their own without providing them the kind of care and maintenance they seriously require.

Not to mention, adding the recommended amount of fertilizer to your aquarium can provide the following benefits:

  1. Fertilizers help in warding off too much light absorption for the plants inside the tank.
  2. They provide the macronutrients and micronutrients that aquatic plants especially require to grow fresher, greener and more beautiful.
  3. These can block the rapid accumulation of algae inside the fish tank.
  4. Liquid aquarium plant fertilizers are very easy and convenient to use.
  5. They can help weak and almost dwindling plants regain their strength and be replenished again.

Depending on your preference, you can make your homemade fertilizer or you may also opt for commercially purchased ones. Whatever your choice may be, make sure that your homemade fertilizer contains only organic ingredients that won’t put your aquarium plants’ life in danger; meanwhile, if you decide to buy the commercial ones, carefully check out first if the brand you get comes with an “aquarium safe†label.

Frequently Asked Questions


Can aquarium plants grow without fertilizer?

Certain aquarium plants can naturally grow without fertilizer. One of my favorite popular examples would be Marimo moss, which I put into all my tanks. It thrives without ammonia or fertilizer by getting nutrients through fish waste.

However, it’s essential to note that plants thriving without fertilizer isn’t the norm. Most aquatic plants will benefit greatly when you use plant fertilizer in aquarium tanks, whether it’s a high-quality commercial option or homemade fertilizer.

For instance, amazon swords are popular aquatic plants that benefit from fertilizers. One interesting thing about them is most people assume amazon swords need root tabs. However, they function best with high-quality liquid fertilizer.

An excellent option would be the Easy Green All-in-One Aquarium Co-Op Fertilizer. It has been my go-to choice for years, and I haven’t had anything but positive experiences using it.

Does aquarium plant fertilizer raise nitrates?

Generally, using a plant fertilizer within your aquarium will raise nitrates. After all, these products often contain this inorganic compound, usually potassium or sodium nitrate. So their presence will naturally raise nitrate levels inside an aquarium.

But if you want to provide food for aquarium plants without raising those levels, certain fertilizers are made without nitrates. A solid example would be LCA NP Free (Nitrates and Phosphate Free) Liquid Plant Fertilizer, which is a favorite among Reddit users who own tanks with high-nitrate levels and don’t trust DIY or other options.

What nutrients do my aquarium plants need?

Aquarium plants require a wide range of nutrients to thrive. However, most people don’t know that these nutrients are separated into two categories macronutrients and micronutrients:

  • Macronutrients (present in any tank in good condition): nitrogen, calcium, hydrogen, and oxygen.
  • Micronutrients (provided mainly by fertilizers): carbon, potassium, phosphorus, sulfur, and magnesium.

If your aquatic plants are supplied with these regularly, they should thrive without issue. After that, it becomes a matter of keeping up with regular tank maintenance. If you do, the plants will look great and offer various benefits for your fish.

When should I add fertilizer to my aquarium plants?

When starting a new tank, you need to start adding fertilizer to your aquarium plants from the first day. Otherwise, they won’t get the necessary nutrients to survive in the tank’s environment. So they’ll need some help to adjust and establish themselves.

Once they’re provided with a top-tier fertilizer, the plants will get the necessary nutrients to thrive. You then won’t have to replace them with new plants anytime soon. Trust me; adding fertilizer from the start will save you a ton of money on replacement plants.

Does fish tank water make good fertilizer?

Fish tank water does make good fertilizer. For instance, it’s loaded with viable nutrients like nitrogen and potassium. I even use it to give my household plants a boost when they aren’t growing as well as intended.

Most people are shocked by how well fish tank water works as plant manure. But I can’t recommend it enough, especially when trying to save money. Commercial fertilizers cost a pretty penny, so it’s a valuable alternative.

Are aquarium plant fertilizers bad for fish?

Aquarium plant fertilizers are not bad for fish. As a matter of fact, these serve as very important plant food that provides the plants the necessary nutrients they need to grow healthily, fresher and greener. They contain the macronutrients and micronutrients required for them to prosper, and grow strong stems and healthy roots and leaves.

In the same way, adding fertilizers immensely assists in warding off the possibility of algae accumulation. And, it is uncommon to find fertilizers these days that would harm your fish and live aquatic plants. When buying one, of course, you’ve got to go for the one that is labeled as aquarium safe.

Api Leaf Zone vs. Seachem Flourish: Which one is better?

Seachem Flourish comes with plenty of organic carbon, it has the capability to exterminate algae, it can encourage a ferrous state of iron, it is easy to use and the dosage recommendation is a piece of cake to administer and best of all, this is the ideal supplement if you have low carbon dioxide. Additionally, this is harmless for fish and aquatic plants and it is evenly concentrated.

On the other hand, API Leaf Zone is quite concentrated; it is not sweat to dose, it can provide more potassium and iron contents for plants, and it won’t in any way put the health and safety of your fish and plants at risk. Both of these brands are included in the top choices for the best aquarium plant fertilizers. As you can see, they both come with out-of-the-ordinary features that are practical and beneficial for aquarists.

Should I buy CO2 booster to use with aquarium plant fertilizers?

Buying CO2 booster to utilize with your fish tank plant fertilizers is really a great help. This will pave the way to making your aquarium plants look their best, look fresher and greener, and of course successfully maintain their health. This will aid in adding carbon that is required for the photosynthesis process.

A CO2 booster can make your aquatic plants make adequate amounts of food to sustain healthy growth. Sooner, you will see that your plants begin to look taller and grow more stems. With a sufficient amount of carbon, this should be adequate to keep the plants thriving a lot better. Assuredly, you will delight in the way your plants look and be stunned by their capability to bloom and grow beautifully in a short span of time.

How to use?

The frequency of using fish tank plant fertilizers shall hinge on what the manufacturer recommends. Some manufacturers would recommend you add it on a daily basis, after two days, on a weekly basis and the like.

Indeed, it is crucial that you strictly adhere to what the manufacturer instructs when it comes to the dosage and usage of the product. See to it utilized properly and noticeable results should already be observed in a span of two weeks.

Generally, a weekly dose should be adequate to make certain that your fish tank plants are succulent and good-looking. Essentially, there are several distinct kinds; however, an A1 and complete aquarium plant fertilizer that commonly contains potassium, iron and other vital macronutrients and some micronutrients required will be more than enough. The vital elements composed of zinc, manganese, boron, cobalt and molybdenum.

How to care & store?

It is indispensable to close the liquid fertilizer’s lid tightly after use; meanwhile, if you are using substrates, make sure that you also store them properly after adding the recommended amount to your fish tank plants. As much as possible, store it in a cool dry place away from direct heat and sunlight so as not to spoil its potency and efficiency.

Where to buy?

Aquarium plant fertilizers are easy to find. You can shop for them in local fish or pet stores in your area. Notwithstanding, if you wish to get them online, you can look for them in Petco, Petsmart, Lowes, Amazon, eBay and other highly reputable online shopping sites that many wise consumers rely on across the globe.


All aspects carefully contemplated, you now realize that the most trusted part about utilizing the best aquarium plant fertilizers is that you can always take pleasure in the many favors that come with it. Hence, it is quite momentous to invest only in brands that professional aquarists trust and fortunately many of these products were reviewed comprehensively above.

By happy chance, with the product reviews discussed earlier, it won’t be difficult to decide anymore which one can definitely assist you in terms of improving the overall look of your fish tank and ensuring the safety and health of your aquatic plants. Keep in mind that the levels of fertilizers must be well-balanced in order to inhibit algae buildup and unhealthy aquarium plants. Be sure to get only fish tank safe fertilizers that credible manufacturers make. It is noteworthy that if this is thoroughly accomplished, obtaining aquascape success is not inconceivable to achieve!