Can you use fig tree branches in an aquarium? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-16-2014, 06:19 PM Thread Starter
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Can you use fig tree branches in an aquarium?

So I have a nice chunk of branches of different sizes of dead fig tree wood (we didn't cover them over the winter....that was a mistake) and I'm wondering if they are safe for aquarium use?

I know that ficus (weeping fig) is not safe, but there are the type of figs that have edible fruit and all that stuff. I wish I had a scientific name but I don't, the figs have been around for almost as long as I have been alive.

Of course I'd want to boil the heck out of them to water log them and leach anything and everything out, but would it be safe? I'm not the most well versed when it comes to hardscape materials.

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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-16-2014, 09:51 PM
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It should be fine. Fruit tree wood is usually safe. You just have to worry about fresh sap at times. It is a good idea to use well aged wood anyways. I have used grapewood, sycamore, aged birch wood, and hickory branches with no problems. I had a list of acceptable woods somewhere. If I can find it I will post it. Found it by doing a Goggle search.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-16-2014, 09:52 PM
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I would say that fig tree wood may be risky to put in an aquarium. The sap of the fig tree is latex based and slightly toxic


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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-16-2014, 11:43 PM Thread Starter
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I asked Tom Barr, he told me it's fine if I used branches that have been dead for a year or two.

To my knowledge none of the branches I have have been dead that long *sigh*

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-17-2014, 12:48 AM
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Botanical name of figs is Ficus.

Weeping Fig = Ficus benjamina
Edible Fig = Ficus carica
There are many more, mostly tropical trees and shrubs, and at least one vine. Many are house plants.

Yes, the latex sap would worry me, too. If Tom says it is broken down after a year or two, the perhaps test some with just a few fish.

If you have some fig wood, then put it out in the garden where it will be alternately wet and dry for a year or so, this will help age it, and break down any toxins.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-17-2014, 12:50 AM
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Do some thorough soaking or boiling.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-17-2014, 06:57 PM
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Wouldn't several boilings, changing the water each time, and then soaking in a bucket or something for a couple of weeks, changing the water every couple of days, get rid of the sap?
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