Shaji's Theory (was re: Substrate heating)

> From: "shaji (s.) bhaskar" <bhaskar at bnr_ca>
> Date: Mon, 12 Jun 1995 13:07:00 -0400 
> Subject: re: Substrate heating 
> I suspect that accumulation of dead, rotting root material in the
> substrate is often the reason why people run into problems with the
> substrate in CO2-injected tanks without heating cables.
> If my theory is right, plant growth will deteriorate sooner in tanks
> tanks with fast growing plants that are frequently pulled out and
> replanted, and in tanks where plants like Crypts and Swords that have
> extensive root systems are disturbed.  If a tank is not disturbed
> often, or has plants with fragile roots, it may sustain a longer
> period of stable growth.
> Anyone out there with experiences that support this theory?  (If your
> experience contradicts my theory, I don't want to hear about it :-).)
> - -Shaji

My experiences seem to support this theory.  I noticed the anaerobicity
a month or so after I added extra CO2 to this tank ( the "natural" level
was about 10 ppm since it has pretty passive filtration, but I wanted
more growth! :-) So I added DIY CO2 & boosted it to 18-22 ppm).

I am constantly re-aquascaping the tank (sorry, just can't seem to help it).
There was one huge cryptocorne with a root system that covered about a
third of the bottom of my 25 gal tank.  I felt it was getting too big
for the tank so I removed it a few months ago.  Most of the plants
remaining in that tank have fairly delicate root systems.