I’m new to planted tanks, and I seem to be having a micro-nutrient deficiency off the bat in my three week old tank. I was wondering if some veterans could help me out. (Please excuse the novel-length post.)
Quick summary of my tank (happy to supply more details if necessary)
40 breeder, hard tap water, low light (one 36” fugeray—my best guess is around 20-30PAR at the bottom and 50-60Par at the top of the stems), low flow (fixing this soon), aggressive CO2 injection via Rex Grigg-type reactor, pool sand-capped boiled MiracleGro Organic Potting Mix substrate, fully planted with ½ carpet plants and ½ stems off the bat, light sprinkling of green dust and diatom algae, only a few hitch-hiked snail and copepod residents.
A good sprinkling of osmocote under the soil + (what I believe to be) standard EI with
-¼ teaspoon KNO3 + 1/16 teaspoon KH2PO4 on MWF
-1/16 teaspoon CSM+B on T,THU,SAT
-50% WC + 1/16 teaspoon K2SO4 on SUN
I’m seeing some white-ish leaves on some plants, particularly new growth. Most prominent is the white, “chalky” looking new leaves on my hygro sunset, which seem a bit deformed (crumpled). New growth on my Myrio mattogrosense and Hydrocoytle tripartita look a bit washed out as well. My HC looks a little white-ish and “dry” over the whole plant, but this may be because of emmersed growth/acclimation—they are very new.
Based on my internet search, I think it’s Ca or Zn deficiency. Ca makes the most sense. Thinking of adding some crushed coral to the substrate (just sprinkle a hand full or two on top) and cutting out the K2SO4. I know my water is plenty hard, and I hear too much K can cause Ca deficiency (is this true?). Not sure about how to deal with Zn, but I think the CSM+B should be covering this.
All of my red plants are growing in green. The new growth has a noticeable change of color. It’s particularly noticeable on my Didiplis diandra, but also on all of my red rotala and lugwigia varieties. The growth itself seems healthy, and I’m seeing good growth with new leaves, roots, etc., but I would like to have some red plants.
I think this may be because the iron in CSM+B is EDTA-bound, and it’s not available for long in my hard water. I’m thinking of supplementing with DTPA-bound iron or root tabs. Any suggestions? Or is this more likely a different issue, such as low light?
My Lindernia rotundifolia leaves seem to be melting. There's new growth, but a lot of melting. It's the only plant that currently has a significant problem in my tank. I have no idea what's causing this... (I thought this would be the easiest plant to grow and was counting on it to suck up the early macro-nutrient excess.)