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do yo really need co2

Andrew Knechtel wrote:
> Hello Bill
> I am just starting out wioth aquarium plants, and so far (After 3 months)
> things seem to be going rather smoothly.
> I have been reading the Aquatic plants digest for several weeks now, and
> notice alot of hubbub about CO2 generators, and adding CO2 to the water.
>  Am I missing a big piece of the puzzle?
> I would also love to see your Web page about your tank setup.  If you
> wouldn't mind, coul you e-mail me the address?
> Thanks in advance
> Andy

The web pages will be linked to my homepage at
Follow the planted aquarium link.
They are not done yet so I haven't posted them. If the crappies don't
start biting this weekend I should get to them.
As far as CO2 goes I feel it is essential in some instances and not in
others. If you are planning on growing "beginner" plants CO2 may not be
needed. I am testing my substrate with very inexpensive plants and no
CO2 injection as of yet. The plants are all growing at a controlled
rate, one that I feel is adequate and doesn't overrun the tank in a
week. I feel with CO2 injection these plants would overrun the tank in
very quick order. So, in this circumsatnce I am in no hurry to introduce
As the plants introduced to the aquarium become more demanding in there
needs I think CO2 will be essential for growth.
I have added a trace element/iron fertilizer that seems to have really
perked up the plants. So again CO2 is not yet a factor.
Also as the tank breaks in the CO2 is the main pH stabilizer. So it is
"doubly" good as the tank becomes more complex in terms of the plants
and water parameters.
Now for something totally different. These kind of issues really tear me
apart. As a chemistry/biology teacher I uderstand all the chemistry and
benefits behind CO2. But, the more I know, the more simplistic and
natural I want to make my systems. So I justify it all by being a closet
engineer and having to build and tinker aquarium stuff.
I don't claim to be an expert but I have lots of opinions.