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Re: Complaint about Flourite

In response to James Purchase:

> This doesn't sound like a problem with the Flourite - I don't think that
>  anyone should complain that a particular substrate fosters an extensive 
>  system in stem plants. From what you have written, it sounds like your
>  "problem", if indeed one exists, is one of tank management (i.e. how you 
>  rearranging your plantings). Some stem plants DO form extensive and 
>  root systems - that's the nature of the beast. If it is causing a problem,
>  put the offending plants in a buried clay pot which will serve to contain
>  the root system.

Refer to the 

;-) portion of my post.

Much of this was in jest.  I guess I was praising the wonders of Flourite, 
rather than complaining.  I was confused about some of the issues related to 
this, but unfortunately, my questions went unnoticed because it appeared I 
was complaining about something (extensive plant roots) which we'd all 
probaby agree is really desirable in our tanks.

>  Again, what's the problem? If you have _some_ stem plantss which either
>  rotted off at the base, or failed to take root in the Flourite, I would 
>  to lay the blame on your planting technique rather than the substrate - it
>  is quite common for stem plant cuttings to fail to set root if the cut end
>  is crushed, either when the cutting is made or when it is inserted into the
>  substrate.

Mainly it was the bottom leaves of the r. macranda which had developed holes 
and appeared to be rotting. I don't know why the tops would be so healthy, 
red and vibrant, and the lower half of the stem (leaves only) would be 
rotted, especially with such a massive root system. It could be that lighting 
and (water column) fertilization regiment changed halfway throughout the 
growth of the entire stem, but I have no answers. I just wondered how a plant 
can appear unhealthy when the roots are obviously grown out enough to be 
taking in the nutrients the plant needs, _directly from the substrate_. I'm 
not blaming the flourite for this--I'm crediting flourite with the extensive 
rooting, but trying to say it will not fix all ills. The tank still needs 
some work.
>  Crypts are slow growers and take a considerable amount of time to develop
>  massive root systems. It is unfair to compare the root system on a recently
>  planted Crypt and a fast growing stem plant. Apples and oranges. Likewise,
>  the root system on Anubias is there more as a holdfast than anything else
>  (although I'm sure that they can absorb nutrients through their roots).
I also have swords and stem plants in this tank and never observed such 
profuse rooting. 

>  If you are conceeding that the "problem" might be caused by other factors
>  not related to the substrate, why blame the Flourite?
I'm giving credit to the flourite. It's certainly not due to any expertise on 
my part.

Thanks for taking the time to answer my post, though. Any 
comments/suggestions about my questions?