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Re: Dueling Substrates

>Date: Fri, 2 Jan 1998 11:39:09 -0800 (PST)
>From: jjke at pacbell_net
>This discussion has also reminded me of some George Booth comments
>regarding a need to annually remove built up detritus in a UGF tank. I have
>wondered what are the particular symptoms of a tank that is 'crapping out'?

We would see plants grwoing less robustly and algae would start to appear on 
some of the algae prone plants. We used H. corymbosa as an "indicator plant". 
When it started to produce smaller leaves and the older leaves showed signs of 
deficiency, we figured the substrate was too rich from detritus and needed 
vacuuming.  We would remove most of the plants and thoroughly clean the top 1/2 
of the substrate.  This seemed to last 9 to 12 months. 

>how does one know when its time to give up and return to step one?

I think it was more of a feeling ... "Thinks don't look right; time to vacuum". 
Our expensive test kits didn't tell us much. Nitrates, etc, all looked fine 
right up to the very "end". 

George Booth in Ft. Collins, Colorado (booth at frii_com)
Need Info?  http://www.frii.com/~booth/AquaticConcepts.htm