Rolling into March, mostly going down hill from here
Some time between the end of January and March 2nd I was doing 15 ppm K per week, guess it was too much cuz it punched a hole in one of my buce, crinkled the new growth on my Ludwigia sp Red, and twisted and hardened some new growth on the AR Rosefolia. No idea what type of hair algae is stuck on the glass.
Brown diatoms return and what I believe to be staghorn algae is popping up in some areas
Montecarlo is still green, kind of
diatoms are still everywhere, moved the Blyxa out of the shade in hopes of getting its color back
swapped from a vertical spray bar to a horizontal spray bar, it's placed low to assist the gyre; placing it higher may cause some chaotic laminar pattern in the middle of the tank. gyre pump re-added to the tank on the right side under the overflow, manage to slow it down by making mesh sleeves for it. the sleeves also prevent shrimp, snails, and plants from getting sucked into it.
at least these guys are healthy
so what's screwing up the tank over the past 3 weeks? I'm not sure. Something similar happened last year around this time too.
List of possibilities:
1) I plugged 8 osmocote balls into the sub, maybe they got loose and are somewhere in the tank releasing ammonia and who knows what
2) My tap water is 8.2 pH this time of year vs the 8.0 between October/November ~ January
3) The 15 ppm K on top of my high Ca was enough to inhibit Boron uptake. Slow Boron uptake = excess silicic acid = diatom bloom. This theory works if freshwater diatoms are the same as the reef ones (some reef keepers dose some form of silica to induce diatoms to feed their fish) AND if aquatic plants follow the same biochemical sequence as terrestrial ones.
The ragged hole in the buce leaf, twisted AR, and twisted L. sp Red seems to imply 15 ppm weekly is too high. 6.23 ppm per week might have been too low, I noticed some pin holes in the older leaves of the Hygro polysperma sunset. Right now (since March 8th) I'm dosing 9.94 ppm weekly to see how it works out.
The whole reason I raised PO4 from 1.87 to 2.87 was to get rid of GDA, I ramped up K to help transfer the P faster. It destroyed the GDA on some buce and anubias.
4) My flow went to sh*t because of high plant density (this was before re-adding the gyre and switching to a horizontal spray bar). there is a stupid amount of Pogostemon in the back right corner
5) Fish waste + food threw off what ever balance I had before
6) My tap NO3 is about ~20 ppm now and that might be screwing with something
7) My denison barbs are chickens, they get frightened easily and knock plants out (mainly the rotala) every damn day, twice a day. That might be disturbing the substrate enough to cause the bloom.
8) To combat my fish, I've been adding some more STS in the area with the Rotala, idk if there's anything in the unused STS that can cause algae though.
9) The 55 gallon temporary tank was also messy as hell and was coated with brown algae on the walls due to having exposed potting soil, I might have transferred something over to the 125.
10) The new piece of driftwood in the tank maybe leeching organics.
Possible solutions in no particular order:
1) Trimming back a lot of plants and manually dusting off all the diatoms on every single leaf
2) watching my flow
3) might have to adjust ferts to both the higher NO3 and higher Ca in my tap water
4) play with my K dosage again
5) may have to use purigen or chemipure to help reduce organics coming from the new wood.