Hey guys and gals,


Just wondering if this stuff will do the job...can you take a quick glance and let me know if this looks like the correct type of rock.  I am going to purchase the red ones if people think it's ok.  I will be getting a sample first before sinking alot of cash.


http://www.alibaba.com/product-gs/543095825/Black_and_Red_Lava_Rock...

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Sure Red lava rock works for aquaponics but I definitely wouldn't be importing it from China!

Now you do want to make sure that any lava rock you get for aquaponics has not been used as a filter material for some industrial process before being re-sold for landscaping.  I'm not usually terribly worried about the stuff sold around where I am but having it shipped through alibaba seems questionable to me.

just go to your local cement company, they used crush lave rock for light weight concrete, used on roofs  and bridge roadways . i got a whole pickup truck full for 30 dollars  

I live on a volcano and have many types of lava to choose from. Not all lava is created equally. Some types are dense and heavy while others are light and porous. I prefer the black cinder as it is very light and porous. I have been using the black cinder in my systems for years. The black cinder is lighter than hydroten and has WAY more surface area. Our cinder comes in many colors. The red cinder is commonly used along the sides of the road here since it inhibits the growth of weeds. I have heard that the green cinder doesn't work well in aquaponics from several people who live down south.

Oh yea I live in China.

TCLynx said:

Sure Red lava rock works for aquaponics but I definitely wouldn't be importing it from China!

Now you do want to make sure that any lava rock you get for aquaponics has not been used as a filter material for some industrial process before being re-sold for landscaping.  I'm not usually terribly worried about the stuff sold around where I am but having it shipped through alibaba seems questionable to me.

lol...  we use lava rock in Japan as well as it is the only thing we have that comes close to being cost-effective.  You do need to check where it has come from though and make sure that it is a reputable dealer and a consumer-grade product, not, as TC said, a secondary product from another manufacturing process.  Other than that, lava rock... well... rocks!

LOL, I just looked at your profile and it said NY.  If you live there, then China is where you want to get the rock.

nickt444 said:

Oh yea I live in China.

TCLynx said:

Sure Red lava rock works for aquaponics but I definitely wouldn't be importing it from China!

Now you do want to make sure that any lava rock you get for aquaponics has not been used as a filter material for some industrial process before being re-sold for landscaping.  I'm not usually terribly worried about the stuff sold around where I am but having it shipped through alibaba seems questionable to me.

I would make a small test system and try the red lava rock on a small scale before purchasing a large amount of it. I have heard a lot of debate about high amounts of mercury in red and green lava. The red lava here is known to inhibit plant growth and has been responsible for killing fish in systems. The chemical components of your available lava may be completely different than ours but I would try it out first on a small scale. The link you put up for the lava says a minimum order of 20 tons. That's a lot of rock! I am sure you could request a small sample batch before committing to a large order since you are in China.

Thanks for your input.  This is exactly what we are doing.  We have a sample coming in soon.  I hope all goes well.  I'll def post an update when everything is up and flourishing, or more so hopefully flourishing.

Chris Smith said:

I would make a small test system and try the red lava rock on a small scale before purchasing a large amount of it. I have heard a lot of debate about high amounts of mercury in red and green lava. The red lava here is known to inhibit plant growth and has been responsible for killing fish in systems. The chemical components of your available lava may be completely different than ours but I would try it out first on a small scale. The link you put up for the lava says a minimum order of 20 tons. That's a lot of rock! I am sure you could request a small sample batch before committing to a large order since you are in China.

I like Lava rock.  I use 1/3 about the size of a U.S. quarter or $.50 cent piece at the bottom of the grow tank and 2/3rds on top pea gravel size.  I get it from my local rock and top soil supplier ... cheap.

I've used quite a bit of the red lava rock we get around here (not sure where it comes from though) with no detrimental effects as far as I can tell.  Then again, I'm not sure I would be able to tell.

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