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pineapple said:
The idea of allelochemical implies that a plant has a defense mechanism, a sort of immune system analgous to the one we know and love in our own bodies, and that if the plant is not properly fed its immune system declines rapidly allowing algae to take over.

Andrew Cribb
I think it is the allelochemicals and the plant immune system that keeps algae away. Only healthy plant can produce enough toxins to kill the algae around it.

Edward
 

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I do believe there is more to it then just the proper inorganic fertilizer presence. The post number 27 in this thread by HeyPK may point us to the right direction. Most likely there are some microorganisms helping in algae elimination. I have tried to break in new sterilized aquarium setups without root transplanting and with sterilized substrate to find never-ending disappointment. Once, roots or old substrate was added, aquarium turned crystal clean.

Edward
 

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McFinn K. said:
Hi Edward,
There are no organics entering in the setup you just described.
Yes there is fish and snails that I feed beef heart. Additionally, there is no filtration, just one air stone.

This is kind of like buying 1 gallon of drinking water, adding some inert gravel and some inorganic nutrients, and then placing it under high light. Result: No algae.
Actually I tried it and the water turned green.

Think about this simple experiment: Add a tablespoon of an organic fertilizer, like steel manure, to say a 5 gallon tank. In another tank, add 1 tablespoon of the theoretical equivalent amount of inorganic NO3, K+, PO4, TE, etc. Which tank would get more algae?
I would expect the manure tank developing algae first; however there may be the benefit of insect and microorganism infestation that will consume the algae turning the water clear.

What do you think?

Edward
 

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This thread started two years ago and we are still not absolutely sure what the correct answer is. However, two more years of experimenting proved again that older the water better. And this comes with fully planted aquarium and very well aerated water. Why is this? A few ideas:

=> Allelopathy produced by plants

=> Water filtration by plant uptake

=> Water aeration - gas equilibrium, 1, 2

Allelopathy produced by plants is real. Higher plants produce minute amounts of momentarily active chemicals to suppress competing organisms like algae.
Water filtration by plant uptake plays a significant role. Plants have the ability to remove almost everything from Gold, Uranium, Sodium to Aluminum leaving water clean. Tap water is not clean and water changes contaminate aquarium again.
Water aeration is a new topic here I would like to introduce. According to Henry's law about solubility of gases we have a problem in aquariums without aeration. Plants are trying to dissolve Oxygen, Fish and denitrification process Nitrogen, etc. and on top of that we are trying to pump CO2 in. It gets out of balance fast and stops working the way we would like it to. By aeration dissolved gases become balanced again where the extra gases escape to atmosphere freeing space for new gases we need, like CO2.

Thank you
Edward
 
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