Turkish Towel

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Chondracanthus exasperatus

Color: Red (Dark red to purple when young, red to yellow when older, can be iridescent when wet.)
Shape: Irregular Blade
Texture: Bumpy
Size: 12–32”
Zone: Low intertidal and subtidal
Range: Alaska to Mexico

Description: Broad blade, irregular edges. Small discoid holdfast, one or more blades per hold fast. Covered with small bumps (papillae).

Edibility: Used to make carrageenan

Distinctive characteristics:

Collection notes: Can be used like a loofah

Phylum: Rhodophyta (Red Algae)
Previous names: Gigartina exasperata, Gigartina californica, Gigartina radula
Similar species: Mastocarpus papillatus

Dulse, Red Ribbon, Red Kale

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Palmaria mollis

Color: Red
Shape: Irregular Blades
Texture: Smooth
Size: 8–10”
Zone: Intertidal to Subtidal
Range: Alaska to Mexico

Description: The name “palmaria” comes from the hand-shaped arrangement of the blades. Irregular blades are attached to a small disc-shaped holdfast.

Edibility: Versatile. Leathery when dried. High in iron and other vitamins and minerals. Eaten in Scandinavia and the British Isles by people and sheep.

Distinctive characteristics:

Collection notes:

Phylum: Rhodophyta (Red Algae)
Previous names: Palmaria palmata forma Mollis, Rhodymenia palmata
Similar species: Palmaria pinannatifida, Rhodymenia pertusa, Palmaria callophylloides, Palmeria hecatensis

Turkish Washcloth

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Mastocarpus papillatus

Turkish Washcloth on Rocky BeachTurkish WashclothTurkish Washcloth Close Up

Color: Brown (Yellowish, Reddish, Black when Dry)
Shape: Irregular Blade
Texture: Bumpy
Size: Up to 6”
Zone: Intertidal
Range: Alaska to Mexico

Description: Short, upright irregular blades that are rubbery and covered with small bumps. The ruffly blades taper to a small stipe and holdfast.

Edibility: Used to make carrageenan. Can be boiled to make a gel-like thickener at home as well.

Distinctive characteristics: Forms a black tar-like “crust” on rocks during one phase of its lifecycle.

Collection notes:

Phylum: Rhodophyta (Red Algae)
Previous names: Gigartina papillata, Gigartina sitchensis, Petrocelis franciscana, Petrocelis middendorffii, Gigartina mamillosa, Gigartina dichomta, Gigartina cristata
Similar species: Chondracanthus exasperatus (Turkish Towel)

Green String Lettuce

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Enteromorpha linza

A Cluster of Green String Lettuce Surrounding a RockHolding Up Green String Lettuce and HoldfastGreen String Lettuce

Color: Green (Bright)
Shape: Irregular Blade
Texture: Smooth
Size: Up to 20”
Zone: Intertidal
Range: Alaska to Mexico

Description: This bright green seaweed is thin, long and narrow, and ruffly at the edges. The blades are around an inch wide and are attached at the base to a small holdfast. Prefers sheltered areas.

Edibility: Edible

Distinctive characteristics: Technically, this seaweed is a tube that has been flattened. You may be able to detect the tube at the base before it becomes a flat blade.

Collection notes: Be sure the area is free of pollutants.

Phylum: Chlorophyta (Green Algae)
Previous names: Ulva linza
Similar species: Enteromorpha intestinalis, Ulva (Sea Lettuce) species

Feather Boa

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Egregia menziesii

Color: Brown (Olive)
Shape: Branching, Bushy
Texture: Bumpy
Size: Up to 30’+
Zone: Low Intertidal to Subtidal
Range: British Columbia to Mexico

Description: This flamboyant seaweed consists of a thick midrib, fringed with small irregular blades on either side that are interspersed with round floats. Feather Boa has a large, branching holdfast and a stipe that is round at the holdfast, then branches and broadens to be an inch or two wide. Feather Boa can grow quite long.

Edibility:

Distinctive characteristics:

Collection notes:

Phylum: Phaeophyta (Brown Algae)
Previous names: Fucus menziesii
Similar species: