Giant Sea Kelp
$52.50 – $1,645.00
Giant kelp grows in dense stands known as kelp forests, which are home to many marine animals that depend on the algae for food or shelter. The primary commercial product obtained from giant kelp is alginate, but humans also harvest this species on a limited basis for use directly as food, as it is rich in iodine, potassium, and other minerals. It can be used in cooking in many of the ways other sea vegetables are used, and particularly serves to add flavor to bean dishes.
Macrocystis pyrifera, commonly known as giant kelp or giant bladder kelp is the largest of all algae. The stage of the life cycle that is usually seen is the sporophyte, which is perennial and individuals persist for many years. Individuals may grow in excess of 160 feet (50m) long. The kelp often grows even longer than the distance from the bottom to the surface as it will grow in a diagonal direction due to the ocean current pushing against the kelp. The stalks arise from a holdfast and branch three or four times from near the base. Blades develop at irregular intervals along the stipe, with a single pneumatocyst (gas bladder) at the base of each blade.
1.97in (5cm), 10.33ft (3.15m), 13.28ft (4.05m), 16.24ft (4.95m), 19.19ft (5.85m), 2.4ft (0.75m), 22.14ft (6.75m), 25.09ft (7.65m), 3.44ft (1.05m), 3.94in (10cm), 4.43ft (1.35m), 5.91in (15cm), 7.38ft (2.25m), 7.87in (20cm)
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