Preparing wood

Woods such as bamboo, brushwood, and cork bark will need preparing before use. Dry woods such as these may contain fungal spores and are prone to rotting when wet. If they are placed in the aquarium without prior treatment they quickly decay, producing bacterial blooms that will appear as a slimy film over the wood and/or cloudy water. Fungal blooms (normally white or

Pictures Bamboo Vines Wood
Above: To ensure that woods such as bamboo last longer underwater, they can be varnished using a clear polyurethane varnish. Varnish both the inside and the outside of the wood.

orange patches) may grow on the wood itself. To prepare brushwood and bamboo, coat the surface of the wood with a clear polyurethane varnish. It is important to use only clear varnish, as colored varnishes may contain chemicals harmful to aquatic life.

The inside of larger bamboo pieces contains a protective layer of film; remove this before varnishing. Also scrub the wood clean (using only water) and dry it before varnishing. Once the wood has been varnished and is dry, soak it for up to a week to make sure it is ready for the aquarium.

Bark does not normally need to be varnished as it is unlikely to rot underwater, but it will need to be cleaned and soaked before use. All dry woods will float and will take a long time before they are fully waterlogged and begin to sink. To solve this problem, the wood can be slliconed to rocks or to a flat piece of glass that will sit underneath the substrate, acting as an anchor to keep the wood down.

Over time, even well-prepared and varnished wood will rot and start to fall apart. When this begins to happen, the wood will need to be removed and replaced, although it normally takes at least a year for this to happen.

Fake or synthetic decor can also be used as part of the design, and many synthetic rocks, tree roots, and caves will look very realistic once they are established and a slight algal growth has lent them a weathered appearance.

Below: Artificial equivalents of natural decor make safe, although initially expensive, alternatives for planted aquariums. Once established, they can look very realistic.

How Make Fake Wood Aquarium

Below: Artificial equivalents of natural decor make safe, although initially expensive, alternatives for planted aquariums. Once established, they can look very realistic.

Natural-looking bogwood.

Artificial wood can look attractive in the right setting.

Aquarium Granite
Above: Bloodfins and glowlight tetras will show better health and colors when kept in a well-aquascaped aquarium with plenty of places to hide, such as these granite rocks.

Was this article helpful?

0 0
The COMPLETE guide to Aquariums

The COMPLETE guide to Aquariums

The word aquarium originates from the ancient Latin language, aqua meaning water and the suffix rium meaning place or building. Aquariums are beautiful and look good anywhere! Home aquariums are becoming more and more popular, it is a hobby that many people are flocking too and fish shops are on the rise. Fish are generally easy to keep although do they need quite a bit of attention. Puppies and kittens were the typical pet but now fish are becoming more and more frequent in house holds. In recent years fish shops have noticed a great increase in the rise of people wanting to purchase aquariums and fish, the boom has been great for local shops as the fish industry hasnt been such a great industry before now.

Get My Free Ebook


  • kyllikki
    How to Make a Fake wood aquarium?
    8 years ago
  • helen
    How to make artificial wood?
    8 years ago
    How to sink natural cork for fish tank?
    8 years ago
  • megan joyner
    How To Make Aquarium Caves?
    8 years ago
  • reiss
    How to prepare wood for aquarium?
    8 years ago
  • jere
    Are glowlight tetras susceptible to fungus?
    7 years ago
  • farrah murphy
    How long does polyurethane varnish take to cure for use in a fish tank?
    7 years ago

Post a comment