By: Estrella Z. Gallardo
Seaweed, aside from being used as food can be used as foliar organic fertilizer for crop.
An organic foliar fertilizer derived from the drippings of kappaphycus alvarezil, a variety of seaweed was developed by the Southern Philippines Agri-Business and Marine and Aquatic School of Technology (SPAMAST) named kappaphycus drippings or KD Foliar Fertilizer.
KD contains nutrients that contribute to soil fertility, including nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium, calcium, magnesium, copper, zinc, iron and manganese.
The use of this fertilizer can improve the yield of rice, baby corn, soybean, mungbean, sweet pepper, cauliflower, mango, pechay, and orchid.
As to pechay ,it can increase the number of leaves and leaf area index of said plant.
KD foliar fertilizer only needs seaweed plastic bag and direct sunlight to prepare. A kilo of Kappaphycus seaweed can yield 650ml of liquid fertilizer.
In using the fertilizer, 20 ml of dripping showed be mixed in a liter of water and can be sprayed directly to the plant early in the morning or late in the afternoon.
The spray should be applied until the plant is drippings wet. KD foliar fertilizer, 100% organic as it is does not spoil compared with other fertilizer that spoil after a certain period of Time.
Meanwhile, a liter of KD fertilizer can be sold for P75. Fisher folks growing seaweed with the low cost of producing the fertilizer can derived additional profit from selling these in the market.
The seaweed is washed in the sea water then placed in the plastic bag under direct sunlight. (PSciJourn Megamanila)