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New Kasselmann book

Discussion in 'Aquascaping' started by chubasco, Aug 4, 2005.

  1. chubasco

    chubasco Guru Class Expert

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    I'm sure I'm not the only one who bought Kasselmann's Planted Aquariums. Those of you who have the book, what's your opinion of it? She seems to be of the Amano school, of sorts, with using a nutrient rich substrate to grow the plants. She also recommends not using peat or natural soils saying they decompose too quickly, causing anaerobic conditions that negatively impact the metabolic process--OWTTE. I wonder how much peat, soil she thinks people would place in their tanks. I'm thinking it's a lot more than what I'm using, since I haven't encountered any of this. Still, I'm very glad I got this book! :D

    Luv to hear your comments....

    Bill
     
  2. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: New Kasselmann book

    Well, she is not a plant physiologist either, perhaps a ecology person that deals with taxonomy, she is good with that, but she based her views on natural systems, well so does Diana Walstad, but that does not imply they are correct in terms of horticulture.

    I and DW both had little issue using soil, and peat as have a number of folks, and it depends on how much peat/soil you use also, these are real questions that need addressed and not broadly dismissed.

    If you assume something, some idea, theory, notion to be truth, then why does it work for myself and others?

    This same very simple logic was appiled to PO4 that folks said caused algae.
    Where is my alghae if excess PO4 causes algae?

    A few simple acceptable assumptions will lead you down a simple path and a hobbyist can easily test if it's true or not in a significant manner.

    From there you can rule out some myth that has been repeated.
    Adding nutrients to the substrate has been a mainstay for many decades.

    Many German and Dutch like the idea, I think Amano got on the bandwagon fairly recently in the last 10 or so years after cohorting with the Europeans and still believing that the nutrients in the water column cause algae or that plants perfer root uptake.

    Meanwhile over on this side of the pond, many have been working with the water column for the last 10-15 years using known materials and concentrations of inorganic fertilizers.

    Both methods grow weeds, and both have their advantages and disadvantages.

    But anythime they claim a plant prefers this or algae is caused by excess nutrients, I can rip them up critically and suggest test to prove them wrong and that are repeatable.

    That's my beef, but as long as you supply the weeds with enough nutrients, whether they be in the substrate or water column, you will get decent growth.

    She cited a lot of field data aboyut the plants and the water column testing, but she never tested the pore water in the soil nor the soil itself.

    And if there are no nutrients in the water, how do the plants grow?
    I asked her that, she agreed that the nutrients had to be coming from the pore water, so her data for the water column really did not test what we needed to know about the plants.

    I have some field data that tells what the plants used and were anaylzed after by measuring the C:N:p dry weights.

    That is much more useful in terms of what the plants need for good growth than what is in the water column or soil.

    With that, you can come up with any number of methods, soil, water column or a mixture, for your routine.

    It's a good book, get it.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  3. handimn1

    handimn1 Junior Poster

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    Re: New Kasselmann book

    Isn't it for the beginners?
     
  4. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: New Kasselmann book

    Not really, I like it, I'm not really a beginner any more:)

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  5. handimn1

    handimn1 Junior Poster

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    Re: New Kasselmann book

    Ya, but you were picking on her, when she is just trying to save the beginner the problems that so many people have when starting a aquarium! After a perosn gets going and wants to know more than the need to read other books, it is hard enough for people to get to like planted aquarium so why not make it easlier?
     
  6. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Re: New Kasselmann book

    While critical of some ideas, there are many different methods and each has a trade off.

    But there is no "method for a beginner" because there are many different goals, plants, etc.

    The book does make some assumptions in support of a method that are not correct and we can show that. But the book is still a good book in most respects and most folks that have been in the hobby awhile might have one.

    Regards.,
    Tom Barr
     
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