Decorating your aquarium does not always require getting stones, coral, or shells beside the beach. You don’t even need to go to the beach to pick some things that will make your aquarium look like more of a marine habitat. Making aquarium rocks is now possible and easy. Faux rocks, also called fancy or fake rocks, can now supplement expensive sea rocks. This choice is also friendlier to the environment.
- 3 quartz Portland cement
- 3 quartz peat moss
- 3 quartz perlite/vermeculite
- A quart of water
- A garbage bag
- Dust masks
- Safety gear. All the ingredients required in making the faux aquarium rocks can be dangerous to your skin and health. Wear as much protective safety gears as you can. You can wear more than just gloves, dust mask, and goggles.
- Mixing. In a large and deep thing like a wheelbarrow, put the Portland cement, peat moss, and perlite/vermeculite mixing them with some water until the mixture has the consistency of clay. With your gloves on, squeeze the mixed powders. Make sure that all the powders are mixed well and are holding together. If the mixture is too dry, you should add some more water to the mixture.
- Shaping. Form rock shapes using the mixture. You may make other shapes with the clay like mixture. After shaping, let the shaped rocks set.
- Misting. Mist the shaped faux rocks thoroughly to prepare it for “hardening.”
- Garbage bag. Put all the shaped faux rocks in a black garbage plastic bag. Seal the plastic bag tightly and place it where it can get direct sunlight. This is done for the purpose of curing the faux rocks. Let the rocks in there for about 24 hours.
- Checking the rocks. Check if the faux rocks feel like real rocks. Scratch each rock with your nail. You should not get any clay-like or sand-like texture if you scratch the surface. If the faux rocks are not yet firm enough, put the rocks again in the garbage bag and sit them under the sunlight for about 12 hours. Repeat this until the faux rocks are as hard as real rocks.
- Room temperature. Once the faux rocks are hard enough, let them sit in room temperature for at least one week.
- Soak. Test the faux rocks’ firmness and remove their lime by soaking them in fresh water for about three days. Change the water everyday until no lime is visible. Wear gloves when working with this because the lime can cause some burns on your skin. As an alternative, you can set the faux rocks outside for at least one month so these can naturally leach with some rainfall.
Making faux aquarium rocks can be time-consuming. But this is surely a money-saver aside from the fact that you can make the shapes that you want to redecorate your aquarium.