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Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V4 #589
In a message dated 10/5/00 1:56:08 PM Mountain Daylight Time,
Aquatic-Plants-Owner at actwin_com writes:
> I have read the article in PAM (Planted Aquarium Magazine) on the topic
> of substrates. However, I am curious about two other substrates not
> mentioned in the article that are easily available. They are Lava rock and
> pumice. I have heard and read that these are good for plants and am
> assuming they should offer quite a variety of nutrients which rooted plants
> could get to for their uses. Does anyone have any experience with these
> as substrate additives.
Amano uses pumice as the primary ingredient in one of his substrates, and so
do I in the one I make for myself. It is high in CEC, but the "nutrients"
are locked in non-useable forms. It makes a great medium for wet-dry trickle
filters, because of its huge surface area. My planted tanks using pumice,
peat, and pyrophillitic clay do well. I'm not an expert, and I can't say
I've grown any tough plants. I'm low tech and no CO2, but I get the growth I
am looking for.
Someone recently forwarded me some info about pumice-based substrates. Maybe
it was James Purchase. IF so, I hope he will post that info here for you.
It works well for others also.
I wouldn't try lava, because the edges are very sharp and I would expect it
to cause trouble for the root systems. The minerals there are also in
non-chelated form, and for the most part not soluble, but in a "living
environment" where all kinds of unseen organisms thrive, who knows?
If you want to discuss it further off-list, just email me.