Review: Estimative Index (E.I.) Fertilizer Pack by Green Leaf Aquariums

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8.6
User Rating: 2.83 (15 votes)

Yellow Spots or Holes? Loss of Leaves? Stunted Growth?

These are just a few of the many symptoms aquarium plants can and will show as signs nutrient deficiency:

  • Iron Deficient- new growth is white/yellow
  • Potassium Deficient- dead patches on leaves, yellowing of tips
  • Calcium Deficient- stunted growth
  • Nitrogen Deficient- old growth yellow and wilted, new growth light green
  • Carbon Dioxide Deficient- stunted growth, white deposits, plant death
  • Manganese Deficient- yellow spots or holes
  • Phosphate Deficient- new growth displays reddish hue, loss of leaves
  • Magnesium Deficient- yellowing of leaves (often in stripes)
  • Potash Deficient- leaves appear as if they are drying
  • Other symptoms may be the result of algae or chemicals

If your plants exhibit any of these deficiencies check out the Estimative Index E.I. Fertilizer Pack below and find it out if it will work for you.


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The proper combination of fertilizers will remedy and reinvigorate even the most disheveled plants.

Aquathusiasts experiencing symptoms of nutrient deficiency have several options available to treat or prevent the underlying problem. Root tabs, liquid and dry fertilizer are all viable options, each fulfilling the same function through different mechanisms. Each of these methods has different benefits:

  • root tabs – last long
  • dry fertilizers – inexpensive
  • liquid fertilizers – easy to use

After much consideration and many hours of research I made the decision to purchase dry fertilizers, specifically the Estimative Index Pack from Green Leaf Aquariums. Read on to find out why I chose GLA, and my experiences with the E.I. Fertilizer Pack.


Cost Comparison: Liquid vs Dry Fertilizer

Liquid fertilizers and root tabs are orders of magnitude more expensive than dry fertilizers. For example:

Liquid Fertilizer:

($15) 500ml of Seachem Flourish – required dose for 60 gallon tank – 5ml (twice per week) Estimated Product Life (50 weeks)

($10) 500ml Flourish Trace Elements  – required does for 60 gallon tank – 15ml (twice per week) Estimated Product Life (16.7 weeks)

  • 50 week Cost – $45

Dry Fertilizer:

($15) 1lb of Estimative Index Fertilizers – KNO3 required dose for 60 gallon tank – 2.7g (three times per week) Estimated Product Life (56 weeks)

  • 50 week Cost – $13.39

As the size of your tank grows, the price disparity will grow as well. Due to this it quickly becomes cost prohibitive to dose liquid fertilizers in anything but the smallest setups. This is why myself and the pros choose dry fertilizers.


Estimative Index E.I. Pack –  Dry Fertilizers for the Serious Aquascaper

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After doing much research I found that there are not many places selling dry fertilizers online. I quickly learned that the chemicals necessary to grow plants are the same as those used in fireworks and gunpowder. So after contemplating the repercussions of this volatile purchase, I chose Green Leaf Aquariums for my fertilizer needs. They had exactly what I needed. A package designed for the Estimative Index Fertilizer Method. It comes with all of the required components of the E.I. Method at a reasonable price. The Pack consists of both macro and micronutrients:

Micronutrients

  • Plantex CSM + B (1/2 pound)

Macronutrients

  • Potassium Nitrate (KNO3) (1 pound)
  • Mono Potassium Phosphate (KH2PO4) (1/2 pound)
  • Potassium Sulfate (K2SO4) (1 pound)

After 5 Months with the Estimative Index Pack

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Initial impressions

I was worried that due to the fact the order was placed internationally and the nature of the fertilizers (specifically KNO3) that customs would have a problem with the contents. However, that was not the case and I received my fertilizers well packaged and prompt. After unboxing the product I was happy to find that everything was shipped without damage and that the items were packaged professionally and with clear and concise labeling. Unfortunately, Green Leaf Aquariums did not include any instructions on properly dosing the fertilizers. The onus falls on the consumer to figure out the proper dosage instructions. However, in fairness it is not difficult to do; Green Leaf Aquariums provides through their website a link to an informative post on properly dosing for the Estimative Index Method. In addition a number of calculators are readily available online.

What confused me the most when I initially purchased my fertilizers was not how much to dose, but how to dose. How would I measure the fertilizers? Through weight with a scale or measuring cups and spoons? I decided to save myself some money on a scale and purchase the Norpro Mini Stainless Steel Measuring Spoons. After doing some quick math I was able to figure out how much I should dose and how often.

After calculating proper dosage, using the E.I. Fertilizer Pack really becomes a no brainer. Just take your measuring spoon, scoop the required fertilizer, dissolve in tank water and pour into your tank. It is recommended to dissolve the fertilizer into solution before pouring into the tank to prevent the fertilizer from burning the plants. For example, if a chunk of  KNO3 lands on a plant leaf it is most likely going to poison and kill that leaf. I found the easiest way to do this was to keep a cup and spoon near the fertilizer. When dosing, I scoop some tank water, pour in the fertilizer, stir till dissolved, then pour that solution in to the tank.

I found that all of the chemicals in the package were quick to dissolve except for Plantex CSM + B. Despite the fact that it is chelated by EDTA and designed to dissolve quickly it was still the most difficult to dissolve into a solution. More often than not I ended up pouring small white chunks into the tank, which the fish inevitably tried to eat. I doubt if this is dangerous for my fish, and I will note I have had no losses to established fish since I have started using this product.

Results

10 Gallon:

  • E.I. Fertilizer 6x per week
  • Flourish Excel 3x per week
  • Miracle Grow Organic Potting Soil
  • Weekly Water Changes

ei fertilizer before

10 Gallon – Initial Planting – No Fertilizers

ei fertilizer after

10 Gallon – 1 month later – E.I. Fertilizer Pack

40 Gallon:

  • E.I. Fertilizer 6x per week
  • Pressurized CO2
  • Root tabs and Blasting Sand
  • Weekly Water Changes

e.i. 40 fertilizer before

40 Gallon – Initial Planting – No Fertilizers

Day 13

40 gallon – 3.5 months later – E.I. Fertilizer Pack

Conclusion

Green Leaf Aquariums successfully provided what I and many others are looking for in a fertilizer package. They combined all the necessary ingredients at a competitive price, resulting in a stellar deal for aquascapers around the world. By putting together this package Green Leaf Aquariums simplifies the buying experience for both new and seasoned aquascapers.

If you are looking for explosive growth (no KNO3 pun intended) and happy plants I highly recommend the E.I. Fertilizer Package from Green Leaf Aquariums.

 

TL;DR

  • Complete Package – micros and macros included
  • More affordable than liquid fertilizers
  • Requires you to calculate your own dosage
  • Will last you a long time

 

Review: Estimative Index (E.I.) Fertilizer Pack by Green Leaf Aquariums
Estimative Index E.I. Fertilizer Package

$15.00

Review: Estimative Index (E.I.) Fertilizer Pack by Green Leaf Aquariums
September 8, 2014
8.6/10
The Complete Fertilizer Package at a Competitive Price
8.6 Review Score
Great Value

The Complete Fertilizer Package at a Competitive Price

Appearance
8.5
Price
9.5
Build Quality
8
Performance
8.5
User Rating: 2.83 (15 votes)

Hi I'm Ryan, the owner of Aquathusiast. I've been keeping fish and aquatic plants for several years now. Along the way I've learned a lot. My goal is to take that knowledge and experience and help you, my readers, create the best aquariums and aquascapes possible. Drop us a line at contact@aquathusiast.com or join us in the forums for a free aquarium consultation.
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