Did you know seaweed is good for your garden?  We found this great big piece this weekend walking the beach and got so excited to bring it home for the garden. Yes, silly.  However, the seaweed provides lots of vitamins and minerals for the soil, plus phosphates. It improves soil fertility, aeration and moisture retention. Generally lots of good stuff to help your veggies grow.

When you use fresh seaweed, you can wash it in fresh water before putting it in the soil or compost.  This reduces some of the salt on it. (Some say it’s not necessary so make your own call.) Please don’t take the seaweed still attached to rocks, that is home to lots of little ocean creatures who will be upset you have taken their home away.  Head to the beach after a good storm and you can find lots of homeless seaweed.

When we turned over the compost this season and added it to some of the raised beds, we laughed when we unearthed some old lobster claws still slightly intact.  Did you know you can add your seafood shells to a compost pile?  One less thing in the trash and they tend to break down quickly.

Don’t live near a beach? You can get seaweed fertilizer online to help give your garden a natural kick.  We used Neptune’s Harvest growing up since we need one of the owners. It’s still around and a great product for doing some fertilizing once your veggies are growing.  We used Organic Neptune’s Harvest Fish & Seaweed Fertilizerand it works great for tomatoes.

Anyone else have a random gardening tip to share?

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4 replies
  1. Melissa Abbott says:

    I too, use shellfish and kelp for my garden. The price point on kelp is great, as in take a walk on the beach and its free. Apparently the native Americans used Kelp and an old fish buried in mounds of earth, where they planted 3 seeds. Corn, Bean, and pumpkin. The Beans grew up the corn stalk and the pumpkins covered the mound, so no weeds. Elegant!…. I take plastic buckets to the beach after large storms to get loads of kelp. Kelp only seems to come in occasionally. I especially use Kelp in the Fall so it can decompose over the winter months but I also use it in the spring. I also fertilize with something called Chickity Doo Doo. At one time, I owned a piece of property that had at one time been a chicken farm and my vegetables grew extra large. That clued me into the power of chicken doo doo (who knew?). If you don't have chickens, which I personally don't, there is a product called Chickety Doo Doo http://www.chickitydoodoo.com/ which I have used with super good success especially on raised beds that had become very depleted. It is completely organic and isn't terrible expensive. The best time to add it to your garden is in the Spring before you do any planting. I also use Espoma Organic Garden Tone http://www.espoma.com/p_consumer/tones_garden.html and mix it into the soil as I am planting seedlings. Anyway, a combination of Kelp, Compost and other organic fertilizers in the garden during Spring works really well for big healthy plants. I use capful of Neptunes Harvest in my watering cans during the summer months as additional fertilizer. Neptunes Harvest works for practically any plant. I have been amazed at how it worked on bushes, roses, hydrangeas, tomatoes, zucchinis, and just about anything. The problem with Neptunes Harvest is that is a little smelly but I only mix small amount of it and I do the mixing outside so it isn't too bad. Great to see you using Kelp in your garden, people really don't realize that this is a wonderful fertilizer.

  2. Indio says:

    I collect seaweed for my compost bin too. I try not to take to much off of the beach because it is home to crabs. The beach near us has salt marshes and the salt hay is great for compost. I feel I'm doing my civic duty by cleaning up the beach so others can enjoy a clean spot to sit in. 🙂

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