Seaweed Extract for Foliar Spray
Marine plants have been used in agriculture for decades because they are rich in nutrients and antioxidants that promote better plant health. Because seaweed extract dilutes in water completely, it’s often applied as a foliar spray. In this guide, let’s learn more about the benefits of seaweed extract as a foliar spray and how to apply foliar spray properly to your crops.
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Benefits of Seaweed Extract to Plants
Seaweed extract is derived from kelp and brown seaweed (Ascophyllum Nodosum), which are fermented into a slurry and then processed into a concentrated liquid or flake form. Some of seaweed extract’s benefits in gardening are:
Rich in nutrients: Marine plants are rich in nutrients plants need to grow healthy. Seaweed has over 40 vitamins, minerals, and plant hormones that are beneficial for gardening. These nutrients include nitrogen, magnesium, potassium, and phosphate. What’s more, these nutrients are highly available for easy absorption. Seaweed also contains nutrients soil bacteria love, which further improves the health of a garden.
Boosts plant immunity: One of the critical benefits of seaweed extract is it makes plants resistant to pests, diseases, and even extreme weather changes. Seaweed extract strengthens plant cell walls, which enables crops to grow robust leaves and stems. These nutrients also support root development, so plants grow more robust root systems. The bioactives in seaweeds, such as polysaccharides, iodine, microelement, and alginic polyphenol, neutralize free radicals that cause oxidative stress. Oxidative stress makes plants vulnerable to diseases and pests. Spraying seaweed extract on plants reverses the effects of oxidative stress.
Improve soil health: If your garden soil is too loose or too dense, certain plants cannot grow in them. Typical garden soils are also heavy, so these have to be amended to improve texture and add nutrients back for plants to absorb. Seaweed extract makes an excellent soil conditioner because it contains vital nutrients plants need to grow strong and healthy. It also improves soil consistency, boosting air circulation and water retention.
Accelerates germination and budding: The concentrated nutrients in seaweed extract accelerate germination when seed-starting. Established plants, on the other hand, will produce more buds when sprayed with seaweed extract solution. Plants will produce more fruits and flowers when treated consistently with seaweed extract.
Longer shelf life of fresh fruits, vegetables, and flowers: Plants treated with seaweed extract will bear fruits and vegetables with a longer shelf life if seaweed extract is applied ten days before harvesting. Flowers will also enjoy a longer shelf life if sprayed with seaweed extract solution a day or two before cutting.
Important Plant Hormones in Seaweed
One of the unique attributes of seaweed extracts is its high hormone content, which is beneficial for gardening. Seaweed contains plant growth regulators, or PGRs, which regulate the physiological processes and coordinate growth and stress responses in vascular plants .
Seaweed also contains a concentration of auxins, cytokinins, and betaines. Auxins promote the budding of flowers and support the vigorous growth of crops. Cytokinins improve plant vigor, and the absorption of nutrients via the plant leaves, and betaines improve water uptake and strengthen weak and/or stressed plants. Seaweed also contains gibberellins, which are vital in regulating plant growth and root development.
What is a foliar application?
A foliar application applies fertilizers or plant nutrient boosters directly on the plant leaves instead of mixing the products into the soil. This application method is beneficial for supplementing secondary nutrients and micronutrients to plants, which are sometimes unavailable or lacking in the soil.
Foliar application is best done in the early morning when the sun is not too intense and the air is cool. The plants’ stomata or epidermis are opened to absorb nutrients during this period.
Something to remember when conducting a foliar application is the amount of product you’re using and the site where you spray the solution. The leaves should be dripping with the solution, and you must spray on the leaves and their undersides too. Certain plant nutrients are best applied via foliar sprays, like boron.
Is seaweed good for foliar spray?
Yes, seaweed extract makes an excellent additive for foliar spray. It is rich in nutrients that support healthy plant growth. It enhances nutrient uptake, improves plants’ tolerance against oxidative stress, and develops stronger root systems. Treated with seaweed extract regularly, plants bear more fruits and are more resistant to pests and diseases.
How do you make seaweed foliar spray?
When using seaweed extract as a foliar spray, it’s essential to check the manufacturer’s instructions for the correct dosage. Mix an appropriate amount of seaweed extract flakes in a small amount of water.
If you prefer to make the seaweed extract on your own, you can do this at home, but the process will take some time to complete. Seaweed has to be rinsed well and dried to remove impurities and pathogens. Soak the seaweed in a barrel of water for at least four weeks or until the water turns into a brown slurry. Strain the seaweed extract and dilute it in water at a 1:10 ratio.
How do you use seaweed extract as a foliar spray?
You can dilute the seaweed extract in water and spray it directly onto plant leaves or dilute it in water with fish fertilizer, then apply it via the foliar method.
What’s important is the time of the day to spray the plants. Avoid spraying between 9 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon. Seaweed extract foliar spray must be applied when the sun is not as intense – 6-8 in the morning or 4-5 in the afternoon when the temperature is cooler. The sun’s heat does not stress the plants during these periods.
How often do you use seaweed foliar spray?
Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions to get the dose and application frequently correctly. The recommended dilution rate for seaweed extract is about two teaspoons (10 ml) per 6 liters of water. Apply seaweed extract every 2 to 4 weeks. You can continue watering the plants after applying the seaweed foliar spray.
For extensive gardens, use about a scoop to a gallon of water. Stir to dissolve completely; then, the solution is ready. Many gardeners mix seaweed extract with other liquid fertilizers for foliar application.
Buy ECOgardener Seaweed Extract For Foliar Spray
Looking for an eco-friendly and natural solution to keep your plants healthy and thriving? Look no further than EcoGardener’s Seaweed Extract for foliar spray!
Made from all-natural seaweed sources, this liquid fertilizer gives your plants the nutrients they need to grow strong and healthy. And with its easy-to-use foliar spray application, you can give your plants a boost of nutrients whenever needed.
Try the EcoGardener’s Seaweed Extract for foliar spray today and see the difference it can make in your garden!