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Re:Simone's thoughts about substrate

Simone Vicini writes:
>Jeff Kropp had almost the same experience as I had with laterite so I want
>to tell him that even if I believe that George, Karen and some others have
>had good results with only that red stuff I think a lot of us don't trust
>laterite as they do especially in low-tech tanks (without UGHC)<

        Perhaps I have the same experience but I don't think I share your
opinion of laterite. My struggle has been a major learning experience which
I wouldn't trade for instant success. One thing now afflicting my tank is
"cold feet" (substrate temp. in the low 60s with water temps in the high
70s). If aquarium caused cash flow wasn't currently a problem for me I
would be setting up with Dupla laterite and heating cables ASP.
        A lot of conjecture has been posted on the APD about CEC values,
humus, vermiculite, kitty litter etc... and it seems you are coming up with
one of the layering amalgams which give George Booth chalk-board shivers.
Sorting through this conjecture is a difficult task. I believe experienced
APD participants when they advise that mixing different methods results in
trouble. With my attempt at  Karen's method I must be doing something
wrong; give me another six months and I may yet learn how.
        Of the low tech gurus my vote goes with Paul K. Who can argue with
such great ideas as his step aerobics Co2 system (I could use the exercise)
and his cabbage/tomato extract cellar (I eat organic food, why don't I grow
my aquatic plants with the same ethos?)

Jeff Kropp