So it seems over the past month I've started seeing my plants not do as good in one of my tanks. The leaves have the trademark pinhole (potassium deficiency?), and stunted new growth (iron and or calcium deficiency?)
Dave, as a general rule plants tend to develop only one deficiency at a time. This is because when they run out of a particular nutrient they cannot continue growing. Since they aren't growing they cannot develop symptoms of another deficiency. So it is very likely that your plants are deficient in only one nutrient currently. Judging from the holes on the older growth on the hygros I'd say you are right about it being potassium. The twisted new growth is not usually associated with potassium deficiency though, but I think we should rule out potassium issues first since the holes are certainly potassium deficiency holes.
The tanks been up and running for 8 months and has done fine until a month or so ago. I started adding co2 around that time so I think that might be a start to the problem? I had been dosing excel, iron, potassium, phosphate, as well as
Adding CO2 is probably what caused the current plant problems you are seeing. Before you added CO2 the entire tank was limited by not having enough CO2 so the macro/micro nutrients your were dosing back then were not the limiting nutrients, they were adequate for your previous setup. This is because the plants could only grow as fast as CO2 was supplied. Then you made a good move by adding more CO2, now the plants are no longer limited by that and they are growing faster which has allowed them to use up all of the potassium in the tank. Potassium is now the limiting nutrient.
What you have to do is readjust your macro/micro fertilizer doses to accommodate the faster growth you are now getting from adding the CO2.
Do not reduce lighting or limit the plants, while that method may also work by reducing the plants' growth rate, that is not the direction to go in if you want to maintain a high tech planted tank!
I recently switch to nilocg's DIY EI dosing which is as follows:
Concentrations(as per wets calculator):
Fe 0.50 ppm
Mg 0.11 ppm
Mn 0.14 ppm
Mo 0.0038 ppm
Zn 0.03 ppm
Looking at this list you are doing fine on the Micros, and the phosphate. But 7.5 ppm nitrate and 4.27 ppm potassium are very low. Usually people add a total of 15-20 ppm NO3, and 30+ ppm K each week. With such low amounts of N and K, good lighting and CO2 in your tank your plants can easily use up the nutrients and start showing deficiencies.
I've been dosing with that for about 2 and half weeks now. Started out doing the recommended macro one day micro the next but had a huge algae bloom a few days in. Since I've been doing macro twice a week and micro twice a week and the algae has slowed but the plants are dying quicker than ever.
The best way to stop algae is to ensure the plants are growing healthily. For whatever reason rapidly growing healthy plants seem to suppress algae growth with very few exceptions.
Has the new dosing not taken into effect yet? Is the addition of co2 making my plants require more nutrients that aren't there? Any and all help will be greatly appreciated, Thanks!
Dosing is likely too low, yes CO2 is driving their metabolism faster and they need more nutrients.
Also, be aware that any damaged leaves you see will not repair themselves. You will know the new fertilizer amounts are working when the new plant leaves keep growing out healthily.