I haven't checked the aquaponic tank in about a week. I just left it to grow and do its thing. Today I noticed the leggy dwarf grey pea plant had some yellow leaves. A closer inspection revealed aphids. Yuck! I thought I'd gotten rid of those little buggers!
I had to get rid of the aphids, and there were too many to smush by hand, so I pulled the entire pea plant out of the bed.
And then of course I felt guilty for killing a plant, so instead of wrapping it up and taking it out to the trash, I put it in the old floating cup in the smaller tank. It currently does not touch any of the sides, which means any of the little bugs that fall off or attempt to leave the plant will be in the water, where the three resident goldfish will inevitably snack on them. I don't expect the pea plant to do well here - there is no grow light, it's already leggy, and I wasn't very careful about tossing it into the cup. At least this way I can convince myself that the bugs killed it so I won't feel so bad. Maybe I'll change my mind in a few days and pull it out anyway. Who knows.
Back in the aquaponic bed, where the pea plant had been, I found stragglers. Nasty little bugs who want to eat my plants.... And I can't even spray them with the organic soap spray because I can't put soap into Minnow's tank.
The more I stare at the above photo the more bugs I see.
I was about to leave the aquaponic bed when I noticed a very tiny spot on the front edge of the tank, and then another... The area where the rocks are lowest (so the water is visible when the bed is full of water - thus growing algae) has two very tiny strawberry sprouts!
And not wanting the basil to feel left out, I have an updated photo of that too. Finally growing some true leaves, but still incredibly slow growing. At this rate we may be able to harvest some basil by Christmas... if the spider mites don't eat it all first.
Today I also checked on Penelope. Still no nest, so I decided to breed her again. I put her in with Bennett and witnessed one successful breeding, but then he seemed to lose interest and she was actively trying to get his attention. I decided to put her in with George then. He seemed much more interested than Bennett and three successful breedings were witnessed before she started getting crotchety and I put her back in her own cage. We should be getting an interesting mixed parentage litter in March (~20th) from this dual pairing. If successful, it will also make George a proven breeder going in to spring (when he will be paired with Cinder).
Amanda's blog about everything, important and trivial.