fish safe rocks, potting soil, pots, old drift wood, ect. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 04-26-2011, 11:53 PM Thread Starter
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fish safe rocks, potting soil, pots, old drift wood, ect.

hi excitedly thinking about lowering the water level in my 29 gallon and making it into a paludarium. i don't want to silicone glass plates to form a water proof base for the land area so i thought id just build an island up out of rocks and/or driftwood. so, my questions are:

1. how do i know if a rock is safe for my aquarium and won't kill my tetras or rainbows? if i pick some up from a reputable local fish store should i be able to trust that it is fish safe or are there different types of rocks that might change the hardness or other water parameters despite the fact that it is supposedly good for aquarium use according to said lfs?

2. since im building the island up with rock/wood i am planning on needing to use pots to put my plants in (im planning on the pots being imbedded and hidden from view when finished). are terra cota pots okay? what other suggestions would you make?

3. my island plants will need soil, right? i suppose i could use sponges and allow them to grow down into the water. what kind of potting soil is safe for aquariums?

4. i have an old piece of driftwood that has been outside in the elements for about a year or two. it has washed out (its mopani wood i believe) and is not the color it used to be. i guess hot summers and snowy winters will do that to a piece of wood. what are you thoughts in regards to whether or not it can be salvaged and used again? not being able to see it for yourself is there something i can do to it like soak it in a bucket of hot water or something?


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Last edited by Prometheus; 04-27-2011 at 03:52 AM.
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 04-27-2011, 12:35 PM
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1. Granite and quartz are ok among other types of rocks.
2. Terra cotta pots will work just fine, many people use them as caves for cichlids.
3. People have been using soil as a base substrate for planted tanks, check for threads about using Mineralized Top Soil (MTS) and bagged potting soil (sorry I don't remember the brand people have used.
4. Wood is ok, be sure to give it a good cleaning. Oak is a good choice because it lasts a long time. There are threads about cleaning wood and preparing it. The piece you have should be fine as long as its not rotting.
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