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The Only Guide You Need to Harvest Seaweed

Updated on March 12, 2019

What Is Seaweed

Seaweed exists of around 250 species is considered macroscopic, multicellular, marine algae. The types of seaweed are categorized into three separate color platforms. These types are red, brown, and green algae. Gripping onto rocks with its natural grabber the holdfast clings to any objects and releases itself with spore reproduction. You could say seaweed is the mushroom of the ocean. Tide pools where seaweed grows makes for a great kelp forest to protect local marine life from predators and gives them a food source for the winter months.

All seaweed is edible but first identify the strain and if it cannot be identified do not eat it. Research local laws on seaweed foraging and see how much you are aloud to harvest if any. Tide pool protection should be your first concern as you go.
All seaweed is edible but first identify the strain and if it cannot be identified do not eat it. Research local laws on seaweed foraging and see how much you are aloud to harvest if any. Tide pool protection should be your first concern as you go.

Red, Brown, Green Seaweed Varietals

The color of the seaweed depends on the amount of light absorbing chlorophyll is the plant. Green seas the sun and is much lighter because of this, Red, and Brown are usually lower depths in the ocean and need more chlorophyll output because of the need to grab the light source an enable them to photosynthesize.

Uses for seaweed

  • Ramen Noodles
  • Baking in a seaweed wrap
  • Baked to make chips
  • A vital ingredient for any garden soil mixture
  • Grab some clay around the place where you are seaweed foraging and make masks to apply on your face at home. After peeling the mask lay the seaweed on your face. the natural enzymes in the seaweed will help enrich your skin as well.
  • Make Icecream
  • Blend with spices to make an umami spice blend.
  • Let soak in a bucket of water for 3 months to be used as a nitrogen-heavy foliar spray.
  • Dry and grind up to make dry soil amendment for your garden or give to friends as a gift for their garden adventures.
  • Put in capsule form to digest enzymes and minerals
  • makes for a powerful dietary supplement
  • Can accent any dish you choose to cook seaweed with.

Pork ramen cooked using a kombu broth. This is a great way to consume seaweed and let its natural vitamins become one with the broth. Ramen is great when the weather is hot or cold, rain or shine.
Pork ramen cooked using a kombu broth. This is a great way to consume seaweed and let its natural vitamins become one with the broth. Ramen is great when the weather is hot or cold, rain or shine.

Kombu

Kombu is a rich source of iodine, potassium, magnesium, iron calcium, and iodide. A highly prized seaweed varietal that is sought after to create the umami flavor in ramen dishes often considered a superfood, and a staple of many countries populations diet. Kombu is a 2-celled double walled organism and when its tip fronds a harvested it can grow back several inches a day. Kombu is only found on the coasts of northern California and Japan.

Kombu when dried is a great source for iron and when cooked it releases the mystery flavor of umami. Great for broths or even making chips. Kombu is a highly prized seaweed around the world.
Kombu when dried is a great source for iron and when cooked it releases the mystery flavor of umami. Great for broths or even making chips. Kombu is a highly prized seaweed around the world.

Bladderwrack

Bladderwrack holds the highest consistency of calcium and iron in this nitrogen boosting seaweed varietal. It is a vital garden necessity for any up and coming green thumb. Dried or wet it can be added to any garden. Soaked for several months then used as a foliar spray will enrich the soil and enhance your garden. Bladderwrack is edible; however, I advise against eating it because of the high concentration of iron it tastes very metallic.

Bladderwrack is great for any garden and holds the highest consistency of calcium and iron in this nitrogen boosting seaweed varietal. Dry or apply wet to your soil in early vegetative growth to boost nitrogen intake.
Bladderwrack is great for any garden and holds the highest consistency of calcium and iron in this nitrogen boosting seaweed varietal. Dry or apply wet to your soil in early vegetative growth to boost nitrogen intake.

Nori

Nori grows on rock structures looking almost greasy as you touch the nori feel for marine life and small crustaceans who may be using this wonderful seaweed as a home. Cut the nori as if you are trimming a long head of head. Never dig into the scalp. Nori can be used to make sheets or chips with a little salt after baking or frying it. Nori sheets are used to roll sushi and create a pinnacle of fine dining options.

Nori can be made into sheets and used to roll sushi.
Nori can be made into sheets and used to roll sushi.
Dried wakame makes for a great add on to any dish its served in and can be found in tide pools during low tide.
Dried wakame makes for a great add on to any dish its served in and can be found in tide pools during low tide.

Wakame

Great for soups and other dishes wakame is harvested and applied very much the same as kombu is harvested. Wakame has a distinct umami flavor and texture which make it a lead ingredient in any cooking situation.

When to Havest

You can use internet search engines as a way to find out what the time of high and low tide is. Always forage tide pools at low tide which take place twice a day. Morning and afternoon. Be prepared for it to be chilly when you go and harvest your seaweed.

How to Harvest

Harvest by cutting the fronds off the seaweed tip.

Three things not to do when foraging.


  • Never rip the seaweed from its location. This will destroy the seaweed which we don't want.
  • Read local ordinances about seaweed foraging. Check local laws and wildlife officials.
  • Never overharvest. The object is to have a place you can come back to forever to harvest your delicious seaweed.

Tide Pool Protection

We must keep our tide pools clean and protected. The kelp forest filter heavy metals, oil, and carcinigenic substances which in turn make the ocean cleaner. The seaweed acts as shade for local wildlife to become safe from predators and also a vital food source for these marine creatures.

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