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[APD] Re: The why of the Barr method
Great topic. I'll be most interested to see everyone's contribution.
I think the method works for a number of different reasons but when it
comes to epiphytic algae I have a theory. Plants have been battling algae
much longer than we have. Why aren't plants in nature covered in algae? (I
know they sometimes are but they are just as often not).
I think you're too quick to rule out allopathy. I agree that the idea that
plants are pumping allopathic chemicals into the water column or substrate
is probably incorrect however at the cell surface where algae are trying to
attach things may quite different. I think it is similar to the experiences
of some where previously benign algaevores and detritivores like SAEs and
snails turn into ravenous herbivores on our delicate plants. Complex
allopathic chemicals, whether they deter herbivores or epiphytic algae are
expensive to produce for the plants. If the plants aren't in top health
they are too busy just staying alive that they cannot use their complex
evolved responses to combat attack.
I realise this doesn't account for getting rid of green water or algae that
don't/aren't attached directly to the plants but I think this is one of the
things going on.
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