Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V1 #15

> Subject: What about filters?

> But anyway ... I've read messages here and in books about most e
> except recommendations on filtration systems. What do you folks 
> OTHER than an external Eheim-type canister system? (Not that I'm
> Eheim. I just want to know about the others. I'm also assuming c
> are your first choice.)

You don't hear us talking about it because it's relatively 
unimportant.  Probably the most often used filtration on a plant 
tank (as you guessed) is a canister filter, because it is easiest 
to set up with the return under water so it doesn't strip CO2 from 
the system.  I'll go through your list of alternatives and give 
you my views on them.
> a. Powerhead driving foam filter.

Good biofilter, but that isn't much of a concern in a planted tank 
anyway due to the enormous surface area, and the plants using 
ammonia(um) as it is produced.  Won't strip CO2.

> b. Powerhead and UGF (I worry about the goop that collects under

Limits what you can use in the substrate, so I don't like them.  

> c. Powerhead, UGF and reverse flow

Ditto.  Also I've heard some problems with night time low O2 
levels.  I have no personal experience, however.

> d. Penguin biowheel or anything where water cascades through air
> dioxide loss?)

As you guessed, CO2 loss is the biggest problem.  This can easily 
be overcome with supplemental CO2.  I personally dislike the power 
filters with small (expensive) replacement cartridges.  The only 
OPF's I really like are Aquaclears, the bigger the better.
> Please don't tell me there are still other choices ... Thanks!

Yup! You can always go with a trickle filter.  Again, CO2 loss 
must be taken into consideration, but it certainly is a good, 
albeit expensive form of filtration.

Subject: Rookwool in potted plants


> >I suspect the high phosphate reading has another source.  Have 
> >added any potted plants without removing the rockwool? 

> I had no idea that rockwool would add phosphate to the water. I 
> you mentioned this, there are times when I get plants and just s
> little pot rockwool and all in the substrate. In fact I have a c
> tank now. This could be a contributing factor to my small alage 

Tropica specifically instructs people to remove the plants from 
the rockwool (and pot) before planting in the tank.  The nutrient 
solution that these plants are grown in is meant for hydroponic 
use only.  The pots and rookwool do a wonderful job of protecting 
the root system while the plants are in transit.  Then their job 
is over.

Unfortunately, in this country, buyers are not even informed that 
many potted "aquarium" plants are not even aquatic, let alone that 
they should remove them from the pots.  The attitude seems to be, 
"well they'll kill them before it makes any difference anyway".<g>

(Sorry, but this is a personal pet peeve!<VBG>)