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Wood from an azalea bush


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Safe for aquarium? Not safe?

It was my understanding spiderwood is taken from azalea roots. If this is true, I'm wondering if cuttings from branches could be used as well.

I ask because I had to prune back an old azalea this summer and I saved some of the oldest, driest cuttings, which have been sitting in my garage for a few months.

I thought these--trimmed up, cleaned up and thinned out a bit--might look good in a blackwater, leaf-litter aquascape. 

Anyone have any experience in with this type of branch wood?


Edited by tolstoy21
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I am still inclined to think azalea wood is aquarium safe, but interestingly as a beekeeper, I can tell you that some species of azalea (and for us locally in mountain laurels) are the source of the toxic 'mad honey' as they contain the toxin grayanotoxin.


Many plants of the Ericaceae family, Rhododendron, Pieris, Agarista and Kalmia, contain diterpene grayanotoxins. Consumption of grayanotoxin...

But what is important is that in azaleas grayanotoxin occurs in nectar, which is a long way from occurring in dangerous amounts in dried wood, so despite toxicity of the nectar, and to a lesser extent the leaves and flowers, I would still be inclined to run a test with azalea wood.

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