Jeremy Gay gets to try out this new range of hardscape for the marine aquarium.
Aquascaping is now positively influencing the marine scene, and offering some desirable hardscaping. German rock and wood company Aquadeco has some amazing products in its range, including mini landscape rocks, Dragon stone and Redmoor wood.
The reef plates instantly caught my eye at a trade show last year and now they’re being brought over by wholesaler J and K I got to feel some and try some out on an aquascape of my own.
As the name says, these are plate-style rocks that have formed from long-dead plating hard corals. Their shape creates an instant reef effect in a marine aquascape and also offers some interesting aquascaping opportunities for more adventurous reefkeepers.
Pieces 45cm/18” in diameter or more are obtainable and I combined some with 30cm/12” diameter pieces to make a shallow hard coral reefscape in one of my tanks.
You can cable tie them or epoxy them together and, for that classic overhang look, place them off-centre, overlapping, or with a smaller rock underneath for lots of shadows and a dramatic light/dark contrast.
They come to you dry and biologically dead, but they will turn into live rock after some months in a mature reef system.
I could smell salt on them when they arrived and I advise soaking them well in RO water before use to make sure that they aren’t leaching phosphate or ammonia — which mine weren’t.
The marine hobby needs more interesting hardscape, so these large reef plates are very welcome additions.
Price: About £7.95 per kilo for big pieces.J and K is the UK distributor.
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