The behaviour here has nothing to do with when the increment operation is applied. $deep + 1 evaluates to 1 more than the current value of $deep, but leaves that value unchanged. ++$deep (or $deep++) changes the variable’s value by incrementing it, so that on the next iteration of the foreach loop, $deep is larger (by 1) than it was before. ++$deep is equivalent to $deep += 1 — the latter form makes the change to the variable explicit via the presence of an assignment operator.
Hope that helps,
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