Re: observations of nature

> From: George Booth <booth at hpmtlgb1_lvld.hp.com>
> Subject: Better late than never - Re: Diffusion
> > Look at it another way. Aquatic plants grow in natural conditions without
> > benefit of heating coils and undergravel filters and in compact
> > substrates. 
> Puh-leese.  Let's not even discuss the "natural conditions" of plants.
> Nature has a way of changing all the water all the time in a river and
> the ratio of plants to water is a *bit* different. Diffusion in deep
> lakes is irrelevant since aquarium-type plants are all shallow water 
> plants.  Anyway, the majority of the plants you buy are from Florida
> plant farms grown in outdoor concrete ponds, not "nature". 
> Let's not drag nature into our discussion; it has no meaning here. 
> We are providing a highly artificial environment and are trying to 
> achieve highly artificial results.  

There is a distinct lack of "hard" data on this subject. I think it would
be good to think about observations made both in aquariums, in nature
and in laboratory or experimental conditions perhaps not even related
to aquaria (directly). After all George, if we discarded all empirical
knowledge made by observing nature, we should exclude Horst and Kipper's
recommendations for Optimum Aquariums! ;-) (just kidding, they did
experimental work too however the foundation of their work was made
by many detailed observations of plants in their natural habitats.)

As I said before: undoubtedly we can improve considerably upon the
typical conditions of plants in nature (or we think we can ;-)

I think we should be open and receptive to ideas and alternatives to
UG heating coils and RUGF systems. Your point about rivers having strong
flows deserves following up; we can simulate this action to a degree
by the use of power heads to create strong currents. There are a 
multitude of benefits for that: stir up debris so filters can catch
it, increase nutrient contact with leaf surfaces, stimulate plant
stem motion(!), exercise the fish, provide nutrient mixing in the