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driftwood question

I found some beautifully-shaped pieces of driftwood (labeled Malaysian
Driftwood) last year, and bought a bunch of it, thinking I could use it in the
future. So when the moment arrived, I soaked it for a month in a bucket to
get rid of tannins, then added it to the tanks. When I first put it in the
aquariums, it was fine -- a moderate amount of leaching as expected. After
a while, however, the wood started rotting quite fast, getting progressively
worse, smelling bad, and depositing a lot of gunk in the gravel. This had
been going on for months. Finally, I got sick of it and pulled it all out.

Is there a way to cure this wood so it stops rotting in the water? Like soaking
it in brine, or something like that? I'd like to salvage it, if possible, because
they are beautiful pieces.


P.S. I've used African root wood and never had problems with it.

Shireen Gonzaga Baltimore, MD