Interested in adding some gemstones to your home aquarium, but not sure if they’re safe? According to a 2013 study by the International Journal of Advanced Scientific and Technical Research, crystal water is said to help cleanse and detoxify, as it is one of nature’s finest water filters. This is no surprise, as the sparkle of gemstones has made them prize objects by many civilizations for over thousands of years.
Gems like crystals are valued for their hue, luster, durability, and value-to-volume ratio. However, choosing the wrong stones may affect your aquarium and end up killing the fish. So, if you’re ready to give your aquascape a boost, check out some of the best gemstones to add to your aquarium.
Get Variety From Crystalline Quartz
Opt for varieties like rock crystals, amethyst, rose quartz, citrine, and smokey quartz for your aquarium. It is important to determine which gems are not safe to place in water, as some are toxic if used in this manner. For example, Tiger’s Eye may contain asbestos, causing the water’s hardness to increase, and ultimately affected the fish. To be safe, use a clear quartz crystal that has been soaking in a pitcher of filtered water overnight.
Choose Sustainable Petrified Wood
Another sustainable addition to your aquarium is petrified wood, which will complement natural plants and biostones to create an all-natural look. It is an example of a remarkable transformation from organic wood material and natural minerals. The stone is known for its bark-like aesthetic on the outside with an array of hues from the minerals within. Over time, logs buried by floods or volcanic eruption slowly absorb silica dissolved in mud, water, or ash, and fossilize to stone. Once petrifaction occurs, the wood will become heavier, stronger, and stone-like, which makes it the perfect addition to any aquascape.
Splurge With Jade
If you’re looking to add a rich color to your tank, jade is a good choice. It can be found in one of two dense green stones – jadeite and nephrite. Nephrite is a silicate of magnesium and calcium, while jadeite is made up of aluminum and sodium. Both differ in chemical composition and crystalline structure. However, these gemstones contain microscopic crystals that are tightly combined to form a compact aggregate.
Preparing The Gemstones For Aquarium Use
After you’ve chosen the gemstones for your aquascape, you will need to follow a proper preparation method before adding them to the tank. Start by cleaning the stones. They must be thoroughly rinsed off and scrubbed with a stiff brush in clean water. It is important that no chemical cleaners are used during the process, as this could leave a toxic residue and pollute your fish tank.
Once the dirt and grime have been thoroughly scrubbed off, you can choose to disinfect them by boiling the stones, or soak them in a bleach solution. Using a bleach solution is best for porous stones. However, gemstones like jade and crystalline quartz should be boiled for about 20 minutes and allowed to cool for at least two hours. Once the stones are completely cooled, you can safely add them to your aquarium.
While these gemstones are safe to include in your tank, it is also important to know that not all gemstones are alike. Fluorite, calcite and pyrite, for example, should never be included, as these metal stones will dissolve and affect the water’s alkalinity and hardness. As a result, this will cause harm to the fish and the entire tank. The key is to choose chemically safe stones that are tumbled, as these varieties are safer than raw gems.