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Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V4 #695

----- Original Message -----
From: "Aquatic Plants Digest" <Aquatic-Plants-Owner at actwin_com>
To: <Aquatic-Plants at actwin_com>
Sent: Sunday, December 03, 2000 3:48 AM
Subject: Aquatic Plants Digest V4 #695

I think there are so many different variables even in a tropical freshwater
aquarium that it is very difficult to isolate a problem.  I believe that for
plants, adequate lighting of the right power spectrum, pH, temperature, and
appropriate water changes are what the amateur like myself most needs to
work on.  Some areas, like yours, have additional problems that need to be
addressed.  I would guess that a low GH could certainly indicate a lack of
some necessary elements.  In most of my state the water comes out of the tap
at pH 9.0.  This is as much as I know about fertilizers: some plants (with
roots) need iron in the substrate (laterite).  I'm willing to bet that all
aquatic plants get some nutrients in addition to carbon from the water
through the leaves.  I think that NO3 is taken in directly through the
leaves as a nutrient.

I would hate to be the one to discourage someone from trying dissolved
aquarium plant fertilizer, especially since no manufacturer in their right
mind would make one that affects pH, but with the caveat that they should
use the most expensive they can afford for starters (dupla?) and probably
use half the suggested dose.  Again, I'm doing a lot of guessing here but
that's what amateurs do until they've read enough about it or have become
aquatic chemists, biotope scientists and small closed system specialists.

Thanks for your post, Bob!

> When I lived in Western NY, I also had good growth of my plants.  Now I
> in Idaho, and without fertilizer, NOTHING grows, not even reasonable
> of algae.  The difference?  Not the kind of fish I keep or the type of
> food I use.  The water is the reason.  Locally, the water contains sodium,
> calcium,magnesium, slilcate, carbonate, iron and chloride.  The
> concentrations vary from one season to the next.  I currently have 3 GH
> of the tap.  In September I have 6.  The fish aren't providing enough
> zinc, or probably a number of other micronutrients.
>   If you get great growth at times and poor growth at times, it may be
> seasonal.  Track it for a year, and see if it is.  If so, then you should
> consider fertilizing at those times of year when your water changes aren't
> giving your plants everything they need.
> Bob Dixon
> Cichlid Trader List Administrator        o
> http://cichlidtrader.listbot.com               0
>                                                   ><}}})>