How to cure this live rock.


New member
So I am about to buy macro rock dry base rock. I am slowly buying everything for my tank over the next 2 months, and I was going to get the rock first, so I can get as much Coraline growth as possible before the tank goes up. I plan on curing the rock in a tub with a skimmer. So here are my questions with 25 pounds of base rock,

1. Do I need light for coralline algae growth? If so how much?
2. Do I need to do water changes, or add any chemicals or coralline booster during this time? will it hurt to?
3. How much live sand, or cured live rock, or rubble rock do I need to add to seed the Live rock?
4. What else do I need to know to start the rock on it's way to looking like gorgeous brightly colored live rock, by the time I add it to my tank in 2 months.
5. I have old sand that was from an established tank, it has since dried out for about a year. This is what I will use in the new tank, should I add this to the bottom of the bucket, so this can re seed as well?

Thank you very much everyone.


Premium Member
1: no, its base rock, there is no coralline if its been dryed. if by some chance there is some on the rock it will take about 3-6 months before any life begins to grow, if ever.
2: no, let it cycle through to max parameters before WC.
3: put as much as you plan on keeping in it. part 2: depends on the size of the tank and if you want fish and live rock or a reef. part 3: of #3: you need cured live rock after your cycle is complete.
4: proper lighting and parameters of Magnesium 1250-1350, Alkalinity 2.5 -4.0, Calcium 380-450. all others at zero or almost barely detectable.
5: you have dead sand if its that old. your rock will seed the sand eventually...find someone you can get a couple of cups from an est. tank to seed faster.

IMO. you need a small amount of uncured rock to help start the cycle along with a pinch of fish food.
also, when you reply, list tank size please! that will help tremedously in helping you get started. also what kiind of filtration if any you will have.


New member
It's a 20G I just bought it I'm very happy about it.

I haven't decided on the Filtration yet, that's a bit down the road. My idea was to seed the LR for a couple of month's before setting up the tank. I would probably put it in a tub with flow and just let it sit there with a few pounds of cured live rock. That way when I do set up my tank, and put the LR and LS in there, it will already have some color.


Independent thinker
i worked on my LR in a similar way. what i did was to set up my LR rock with halve live sand and half aragonite. then purchased small pieces of
cultured rock with rock that had various colored coralline. then dosed it every other day with Purple up accelerator. it took up to three months but the results were tremendous. now if I could just get my parameters
right, and lighting adjusted I should be good move on to LPS corals. Thats if my wife could find it in our budget


Team RC
Here's Marco Rocks FAQ on cycling their rock. Here's the link -

Even though Marco Rocks has been washed and dried it will still have some trapped organic material that will break down and need to cycle before it is safe to use in your tank.

What is a cycle and how do I cycle my rock?

Cycle most often refers to one of two things with regard to live rock or base rock.

a)The amount of time before your rock can act as a biological filter

b)The amount of time before dried organic material and die off is harmless

The answer to each is one in the same, when cycling your Marco Rocks simply add a cup of live sand and a small amount of live rock from an established tank to your tank. The ammonia being produced by the trapped organic material in your new dry rock will feed the beneficial bacteria and organisms as they grow in numbers and colonize your new rock (We use and recommend a nitrifying bacteria product by Fritz (turbo start 900) to help boost this). During this time you should monitor ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. You will first see ammonia spike, then nitrite and finally nitrate. Once you see ammonia and nitrite stable at -0- or very near -0- and nitrate on a steady decline, your rock is considered “cycled”. During this cycle time we recommend frequent water changes, aggressive skimming and turbulent water flow.

1. The rock isn't going to have coralline so you'll need to seed it from some cured live rock. A piece or two will be fine.
2. Don't add anything while the rock is curing. Do a water change once the cycle has finished.
3. I would seed your sandbed with a couple cups of established live sand to seed the sandbed.
4. Just be patient as it will take a while for the coralline to take hold.
5. Just rinse and use the sand for the main display. No need to cycle the sand. ;)