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Re: Personalized substrates, was [none], also Hybrid Substrates.

Karen Randal wrote:

>person like that is my good friend, and the grower of _beautiful_ >plants,
>Dorothy Reimer.  She uses so little light over her tanks that most of us
>couldn't keep Java moss alive.  She uses soil to grow all her plants, >but
>contrary to most of the soil advocates on the list, she uses nothing but
>super market potting soil.  But still her plants grow beautifully.<g>

>Sometimes, a person has found a method that works very well with their
>particular water supply.  They can consisitently repeat that success.  >But
>you can't always duplicate their methods elsewhere and achieve the same
>success.  One thing I've noticed about Dorothy is that she seems to work
>with many of the "old favorites", and has less success with some of the
>light hungry stem plants that we have available now.

After and acticle a number of years ago concerning D.Reimer and her
technics.  I tried her gravel/poultry
grit-covered-commmercial-potting-soil, in pots, over RFUG with good
results on swords, Apons, and Crinums (moderate light, 2-3 W/gal.).  I
gave up the technic after repotting some of the large swords 12-18+
 months later and finding apparent H2S pockets under a couple of
plants.  No tank symptoms of probems, the plants looked fine, but the
grower was frighted off.  As I believe she was a strong proponent of at
least annual re-potting, I assumed the problem was the grower's
lackadasical ways, accepted the blame and moved on.

Slightly off-topic, but re Karens comment on low lighting, has anyone
really studied Ammano's levels on the moderate to large tanks, as
published in his book series?  I really couldn't grow Java Moss there.

And A.Inniss wrote:

>I recommend you experiment in pots
>_first_!  I initially had very poor results mixing Tetra Initial D and
>Terralit, possibly because that combination just won't work well at the
>proportions I used them, or perhaps because the soil was too acid, my
>water too soft and poorly buffered etc.  I'm not sure _why_ this
>combination failed, but I am sure I should have tested it with a few
>plants in pots first.  

I made a the same attempt, with the same results.  Might not have been
the water, as mine is moderately hard and alkaline (dGH 12, dKH 8, pH
7.5), certainly not lacking buffering capacity.  My attempt was in
efforts to stretch existing stocks of Hilena Initial D when LFS was out
and experiencing some delay on re-order.  The plants invoved were all
repotted after a few months of little or no growth.  No real
conclusions, it just did not do the job for_me.  My trials were potted.