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Re: Pearling algae ???'s

On Thu, Jan 31, 2002 at 06:53:26AM -0500, Neil Frank wrote:
> >
> >> 1-  Does pearling signify that plant is growing and has plenty of nutrients
> >> or does it just mean theres respiration?
> >
> >_Generally_, pearling is what you look for.
> You can have good plant growth and no visible algae without ANY pearling.
> Pearling is an indication of a generally faster photosynthetic rate and
> larger quantity of photosynthesizing plants that are sufficient to create
> oxygen saturation. It also depends on the initial O2 state in the morning,
> and other factors. When the water is saturated, the new O2 can no longer go
> into solution so you see visibile bubbles on the leaves, or thin streams of
> bubbles rising to the surface

I'll second this thought - pearling is really just a direct indicator of O2
saturation, nothing more. Pearling plants also indicate that you are
driving photosynthesis pretty hard, so yes, you must be doing
something right. But a lack of pearling does not necessarily mean you
are doing something wrong, or that something is out of balance or lacking.

> I have some tanks with no pearling,
> no visible algae and I still pull plants out each month. In those tanks, if
> I provide more light and/or CO2 and/or nutrients, I can get pearling. I
> mostly choose not to do so. Slow plant growth can be very
> gratifying.

Yes - less work! I too rarely get pearling, have almost no algae and
still have considerable growth (e.g. some stem plants have growth > 1"
per day - way too fast for my tastes!).

Dan Resler                            email: dresler at vcu_edu
Computer Science Dept.
Virginia Commonwealth University           
Richmond, VA 23284-3068 USA