Third Planet Treasures

The Best Aquascaping Rocks for your Aquariums 

  I find this link to be very informative on the chemical make up of Rocks and photos which will help you identify and decide if the rock fits your aquatic needs. I've added a few examples below on some of the stones I carry for a easy brief explanation. But I encourage you to read this --> http://geology.com/rocks/
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Rocks and their affects on aquarium waters.

Quartz:
  Is one of the most common rocks used for aquariums from sand to large Rock structure focal points and is used in both fresh and salt waters. 
Quartz is a compound of one part silicon and two parts of oxygen, silicon dioxide, SiO2.  

Lava: Is well known for being porous and very moss and plant friendly. It is uses in many aspects of aquascaping from focal points to filtering in both fresh and salt water and is also good for beneficial bacteria. Lava is rough and sometimes sharp and can tear fins so it's important to think about the fish and the stones you put into your tank.
Chemically lava is made of the elements silicon, oxygen, aluminum, iron, magnesium, calcium, sodium, potassium, phosphorus, and titanium (plus other elements in very small concentrations.

Mexican Marble: Or more known in the rock industry as Travertine is a beautiful stone and is great for aquatic pets that prefer a more hard alkaline water environment.
Travertine is a form of Limestone just like Holey rock and is a kind of calcerous rock that contain high pH for either saltwater or freshwater aquariums.
One of the most common concern is the effect that carbonate rocks (limestone, coral, calcareous sandstone, Texas Holey Rock, etc.) may have by raising the pH and hardness of the tank water. If you have an African rift lake cichlid tank this is clearly a benefit, rather than a concern.  

Slate: Is easy to work with, stacks well and used in many aspects of aquascaping from ledges to creating caves. 
Slate is mainly composed of the minerals quartz and muscovite or illite

Sandstone:   Most sandstone is composed of quartz or feldspar because these are the most common minerals in the Earth's crust. Like sand, sandstone may be any color.  Rock formations that are primarily composed of sandstone usually allow percolation of water and other fluids and are porous enough to store large quantities, making them valuable aquifers.

Azurite and Malachite raw stones. These stones are semi precious and beyond beautiful and used in many jewelry creations, tricky to work with when creating lapidary and definitely not for the beginner aquascaper by any means. These stones are safe to handle in raw and lapidary form. With that said,  I would not suggest you use these stones in a tank with invertebrates. These stones are formed in copper mines and can leak co2. . Azurites main component is also the main component of Ich medicine and can actually benefit your aquarium.  It will take some experimenting to balance out your waters. I've used these stones in my tanks and it does take some balancing but if you can master this your tank will be full of stunning colors. Also think about the fish you're putting in your tank. Are they sensitive or hardy? You should always research your fish and their environment needs before acquiring.

 You can also spray a non toxic waterproof aquatic sealant spray on any stones to seal it as well if you're not sure about the rock you are purchasing. 

Zeolite
What is Zeolite?
Zeolites are naturally occurring minerals that are composed of aluminosilicates. There are more than 40 naturally occurring types of zeolite, and more than 600 synthetic forms. Zeolite has a variety of uses as both a dietary supplement and as a potent adsorbent of water, gases, some chemical compounds, metals and even odors. Zeolite is a highly efficient mechanism to remove ammonia compounds from water, protecting fish in both aquariums and ponds. Over a period of time however, zeolite can eventually lose it's ability to absorb the ammonia. This guide will explain how to recharge zeolite for that very purpose.
Instructions
A brine solution by taking non-iodized table salt and dissolving it in warm water. The ratio used should be 4 tbsp. to 1 cup of warm water.

Step 1: Immerse the zeolite in the brine.
Step 2: Allow zeolite to soak for at least nine hours. (24 hours is recommended.)
Step 3: Rinse the zeolite thoroughly with fresh water.
Step 4: Replace the zeolite in the aquarium filter.

An easier method of recharging zeolites can be done with just an oven and baking sheet.
Step 1: Preheat an oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 2: Remove the zeolite from its container and spread the zeolite in a single layer on the baking sheet.
Step 3: Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
Step 4: Remove the baking sheet from the oven and allow the zeolite to cool to a room temperature.
Step 5: Place the zeolite back in its filtration container.
Note: If zeolite is recharged, it should be discarded after two to three months of use, and replaced with new zeolite.