Lead Weights and Plastic Divers

Subject: Re: Lead plant anchors

As the mother of two young sons, I am aware of the clear danger 
from environmental lead.  While I have read that lead plant 
weights are not a major risk in an aquarium, we seem to be missing 
the basic problem here.  Bunch plants (or others with the 
exception of epiphytes) should not be lead weighted, tied, rubber 
banded, paper clipped or otherwise have their stems restricted in 
the aquarium.  _ALL_ of these methods can damage the stem and 
cause the plant to rot.  

Use a gravel that is fine enough to hold the plants you intend to 
use.  Strip enough leaves from the bottom of each stem to allow 
several internodes to be placed in the substrate.  Plant no more 
than 3 stems at a time... preferably one at a time.  If the the 
plants are very buoyant, and refuse to stay down there are two 
options.  Allow them to float on the surface until the develop 
some roots, at which point it will be much easier to keep them 
anchored, or place a small stone(s) on the substrate at the base 
of the plant to keep the substrate from shifting and allowing the 
plant to lift out.  The stones should be removed in a week or two 
when the plant has developed sufficient roots to stay in place by 

I have never found a plant that can't be managed in one of these 
ways if the substrate is appropriate and disruptive fish are 
avoided.  If large fish are the problem, reomve them along with 
the weights!<g>


Subject: Re:Diver?

While not keen on underwater plastic diver guys myself, I've never 
heard of one hurting a plant.  Beauty is in the eye of the 
beholder.  Let's live and let live! ;-)

Karen Randall
Aquatic Gardeners Assoc.
Boston, MA