Can I use the skeleton of a long dead rhododendron as aquarium wood?

Jenay

Member
I've got two dead rhodies in my yard, and while contemplating their removal the other day, I noticed that the dried out branches have a really nice shape to them.

Does anyone know if these are safe for use in a freshwater aquarium?
 

coralbandit

Member
I can't give a real knowledgeable answer but I believe the latest rage [ spider wood ] is azalea roots ??
I " wood " think if de barked it should be fine ..
Don't over look the roots ...
 
  • Thread Starter

Jenay

Member
coralbandit said:
I can't give a real knowledgeable answer but I believe the latest rage [ spider wood ] is azalea roots ??
I " wood " think if de barked it should be fine ..
Don't over look the roots ...
Thanks. I will look up the correct method of doing that... And confirm that "spider wood" is in fact azalea. I thought that stuff was just small Manzanita roots.
 

saltwater60

Member
I can’t imagine rodi’s would cause you issues especially if long dead and dried out. Not sure how long they would hold up. Only consideration is rodi’s like acidic soil so might drip your ph a bit.
 
  • Thread Starter

Jenay

Member
Thanks. I'll see if I can find someone local, and see if they've ever tried it, and if it's worth the trouble... Rhodies are EVERYWHERE around here, to the point that some people consider them a pest shrub. (Insane, because they're gorgeous.)
 

tnrsmomma

Member
Jenay said:
Thanks. I'll see if I can find someone local, and see if they've ever tried it, and if it's worth the trouble... Rhodies are EVERYWHERE around here, to the point that some people consider them a pest shrub. (Insane, because they're gorgeous.)
I have wondered a lot myself if they are safe to use. They are all over where I live as well and usually so fantastically twisty.
 

Betta02

Member
I can't say if it would be safe or not, but I am kicking myself because last summer we cut down a ton of ivy and grapevines that had wonderful twisty stalks. I'm now wondering if I couldn't have dried them and used them in my new tank.
 
  • Moderator

Coradee

Moderator
Member
I believe some species of Rhodedendrons are toxic to both fish & humans, for the life of me I can’t remember where I read about it, though there were plenty questions about it. Sorry, not been much use for you :(
 

Feohw

Member
I actually meant to reply to this back when you posted it, but ended up getting distracted. I've read the same things about them being toxic and have seen some people advise not to use this wood.

"Some Rhododendron driftwoods contain grayanotoxins, which can cause stomach, heart, and nerve damage in humans and animals. This type of driftwood is not suitable for the aquarium. It has not been documented whether the toxins have effect on fish and exactly what concentration is toxic."

So it may or may not have had toxins, but being long dead may have dealt with that? I wouldn't risk it personally. Spiderwood is an azalea root that is obviously confirmed to be safe. Maybe if you knew the species of rhodo you would be able to look into toxicity. I'm interested if you already went ahead with it?

edit* just looked into the toxins. They degrade over time at quite a slow rate after death. So depending on how long there could be some toxins are none at all. As its long dead I'd hope there would be none. Still wouldn't risk it myself.
 
  • Moderator

Coradee

Moderator
Member
Thanks Feohw, that’s possibly where I read it. :)
 

tnrsmomma

Member
Betta02 said:
I can't say if it would be safe or not, but I am kicking myself because last summer we cut down a ton of ivy and grapevines that had wonderful twisty stalks. I'm now wondering if I couldn't have dried them and used them in my new tank.
Oh man! Not to make the regret worse, but they sell grapevine chunks at my lfs for way too much money.
 

Most photos and links are disabled if you are not logged into the forum.

Log in or register to view

Top Bottom