Author Topic: Composted Sargassum as Soil Amendment  (Read 491 times)

johnb51

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Composted Sargassum as Soil Amendment
« on: June 12, 2020, 12:14:39 PM »
Now that SoFlo beaches have reopened, yesterday evening my wife and I went to Pompano Beach for a little stroll.  I'm sorry to report that sargassum, the brown microalgae or seaweed, is once again piled high and choking our beaches.  Scientists say this is the new normal for the Caribbean and the east coast of Florida, and we can expect it just about every summer.  Is there any good use for this material?  Could it be collected and composted and spread over soil as an amendment and humus enhancer?  If local communities are incapable of doing this, should a gardener with a pickup truck take advantage of the situation and thereby possibly improve the soil in his garden, especially where there's sandy soil?
John

Oncorhynchus

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Re: Composted Sargassum as Soil Amendment
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2020, 01:39:21 PM »
I looked into this a while ago and from what I remember was that it isnít as good as the cold water kelps that they make commercial fertilizer out of but is still fine. The report I read composted it with something like 75% other material.  I threw a bunch of gracilia (the red algae you find on the beach) on my compost pile and it broke down really quickly. Iíd recommend rinsing it really well before using to get as much salt off as possible. Iíve also heard of people mulching their vegetable gardens with it.

pineislander

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Re: Composted Sargassum as Soil Amendment
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2020, 06:21:53 PM »
If you take plastic drums to the beach with boards for a ramp you can fill then roll across the beach and up into a truck.
The drum would also serve as a rinsing vessel. (Been thinking about it myself).

Finca La Isla

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Re: Composted Sargassum as Soil Amendment
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2020, 06:38:06 PM »
It also sporadically appears on our beach on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica.  Last year I made 3 trips with my pickup collecting a total of 75 large sacks.  We like it.  Originally I washed the salt off but we donít do that any longer.  If you get good rainfall I wouldnít worry about it.
Peter

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Re: Composted Sargassum as Soil Amendment
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2020, 02:16:51 PM »
Good tip, Mr. Peter.

Salt build-up in soil is a problem in arid regions, where there is no salt-free water to rinse with.
Har

 

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