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Keeping Plants Outdoors

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  1. Growing aquatic plants outdoors; not so simple.
    by Dwight <boukmn/mindspring.com> (Wed, 19 Jan 2000)

Growing aquatic plants outdoors; not so simple.

by Dwight <boukmn/mindspring.com>
Date: Wed, 19 Jan 2000

>>> After looking at your excellent website I am under the impression that you
>>> have an aquarium outside, getting indirect or even some direct tropical
>>> sunlight and you're able to control any algae outbreaks just by
temporarily
>>> increasing the plant load?
>>> 
>>> What water temperatures are reached in your set-up, if you don't mind my
>>> asking?
>>> 
>>> I live in a somewhat similar climate in Florida, USA and while I've been
>>> tempted with such an idea at times-  my best guess is that if I attempted
>>> such a project I'd end up with pea soup and little else.
>>> 
>>> Now growing aquarium plants in an outdoor pond which receives some direct
>>> sunlight is an idea with much merit and one which I intend to implement
soon.
>>> 
>>> Best Regards,
>>> 
>>> BobO.

I'd be very wary of growing plants outside in to get the benefit of
Florida's bright sunshine.  I have attempted this a few times and its not
as simple as it first appears.  A few challenges to overcome:

1.	The tendency of some plants in REAL sunlight to go immersed on you. Ex:
Hydrophila sp., Echinodorus, several stems.  Blocking light to other species.

Solution:  Chose your species very carfully to match your proposed outdoor
conditions.  
Decide how you will control the emergent growers.

2.	The outdoor growth can cause temp to fluctuate wildly from lethally hot
to below freezing.
3.	Some species we know and love just can't take REAL DIRECT day light for
even a few hours. Ex; most crypt species.

Solution:    A sun diffuser screen like what they use to grow some veges
under.  Check zoning.
Pull plants inside during winter months.

4.	The seasonal changes may yield unintended consequences for your plants
if they are geneticllly programmed to "go dormant" or even to slow
down/speedup growth causing them to be outcompeted by or to outcompete
other species. 

Solution:  Chose your species very carfully to match your proposed outdoor
conditions.  Don't mix-'n-match species from different climate zones and
lighting conditions.



D.Chang

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