Can I use landscape rocks from the yard?
There is a stack of white flat rocks in the yard that used to make up a rock wall. I think they would look cool in the old 55G for my cichlids. If I rinse them aggressively first, is it OK to put these in the tank? Are they any different from the expensive ones at the LFS? THX.
I went to a Landscapr rock place and I got some black slate. They let me have the broken peices for free as they said that could not sale them. You just have to be sure they were not sprayed with any chemicals. I would think that they would be ok to use. Flag stone, Slate make good stacking peices for a aquarium. If the peices are to big you can use a hammer and break them down into smaller peices.
Can you post a picture of the rocks? You can let it sit in a bucket of tank water for 24 hours and see if it alters the water chemistry. Eileen brings up a good point, I would make sure they were never sprayed with chemicals or anything. While those chemicals may not show up/alter your water chemistry, they could be lethal to your fish.
You can also use a strong acid (muriatic acid, one of the acid reagents from your liquid test kit, or something like "pH down" if you happen to have any of that laying around) to test the rocks to see if they'll increase your pH and hardness.
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