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Rocks for the aquarium

I found Robert's info on rocks very interesting but have a question.  I have
been considering adding some slate to my tank.  I haven't already since you
couldn't see it though the green water!!  Anyway, it is black slate with
deposits of rust-red in places. You can rub it off with your finger.  The
"deposits"  grow in the aquarium and easily crumble into a mess if you rub
across them in the water.  It is obviously not toxic due to the fact that I
used some of this slate for years in African cichlid tanks and it affected
neither them nor their fry.  You do not want to let it rest against glass
though, it won't come off glass if it rests against it for any length of

Is it iron oxide?  Will it have any kind of detrimental/beneficial effect in
a planted tank? It is high light, CO2 injected etc. (the tank, not the oxide
he, he)