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NFC: Peat (was Re: pinestraw as a acidifier?)

robert a rice wrote:
> I just allow the leaf litter to sit on the bottom of the tank and with
> the cocunut I put it in the filter

What, pray tell, is wrong with good old peat -- Canada sphagnum type, to be

Killifolk have been using it to acidify the tank and soften the water for
over half a century, with excellent results.

It is available at garden shops in bags or bales, and in pellet form it is
particularly easy to use. Peel the mesh and microwave in a pyrex measuring
cup of water to make it soft and instantly sinkable. Rinsing under the cold
tap, in a fish net, gets rid of the worst brown stain and fines that can
take longer to settle.

Use in filters, in spawning containers, or as a simple substrate. It softens
the water (Ca->Na exchange) to reduce GH and adds humins that can drop pH
(if your KH is initially not too high). It also does magical antibacterial
things that make for the *only* way some killies seem to produce viable eggs
that will gestate to term and hatch.


PS. I do like dry (fallen), boiled oak leaves for hiding space for shy wild
Bettas and more reclusive killies.

Wright Huntley,  Fremont CA, USA,  510 494-8679     huntley1 at home_com

In retrospect it becomes clear that hindsight is definitely overrated.