Bladderwrack
shopping: two varieties
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per 1/4 Pound
Quantity:  
$5.40 
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per Pound
Quantity:  
$13.50 
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per 1/4 Pound
Quantity:  
$5.88 
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per Pound
Quantity:  
$14.70 

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Fucus vesiculosus
plant overview
bladderwrack, nutrition from the sea

Bladderwrack, is a variety of kelp or seaweed that is harvested along the North Atlantic coastline. In addition to a high degree of mucilage and cellulose, bladderwrack is a rich source of sodium, potassium and iodine. The dried kelp, although a bit salty-tasting, is sometimes used in teas and in other beverages. Powdered bladderwrack is added to foods as a natural source of iodine but with less sodium than table salt. Bladderwrack powder is also used as an organic fertilizer.

Clicking "learn more" next to each variety will take you to individual product pages for details.
Bladderwrack

01.
Where in the World

habitat and range for bladderwrack

Bladderwrack is a seaweed found on the coasts of the North Sea, the western Baltic Sea, and the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

02.
A Bit of Botany

some botanical information for bladderwrack

description
Bladderwrack is a perennial plant of the Fucaceae family ranging in color from light yellow to brownish-green and grows up to 2-3 feet in length. Bladderwrack leaves are fan shaped and it attaches itself to rocks via root-like extremities growing from its leathery stalk.

Bladderwrack has flattened, branching fronds, which have an obvious midrib, and are covered with spherical air bladders, which tend to occur in pairs on either side of the mid-rib. In small plants, however, air bladders may be entirely absent. Forked and pointed reproductive structures occur at the tips of the fronds.

The appearance of bladderwrack varies depending on the environmental conditions in which it occurs; in more sheltered areas there are many air bladders, whereas there are fewer in more exposed conditions. In very exposed areas, a form of bladder wrack may arise, which completely lacks bladders.

common names
& nomenclature

"Vesiculosus" is from the Latin and means covered with little bladders or blisters.

A general West Germanic borrowing, cf. Old Frisian bete, Middle Dutch bete, Old High German bieza, German Beete.

Also known as:
bladder wrack, lady wrack, sea ware, bladder wrack rockweed, kelp, seawrack, kelpware, black-tang, bladder fucus, cutweed, seaweed, sea oak, black tany, cutweed, fucus sea-wrack, kelp-ware, black-tang, quercus marina, cutweed, bladder fucus, fucus vesiculeux, blasentang, seetang, and meeriche

03.
Cultivation & Harvesting

how bladderwrack grows and is harvested

climate
Bladderwrack is a seaweed found in the cold waters of the North Atlantic Ocean.

growing
Bladderwrack has separate male and female plants, and reproduction takes place once a year. Sex cells are produced in structures known as 'receptacles' located at the tips of the fronds. Eggs and sperm are released simultaneously into the water; the eggs release a pheromone that attracts the sperm, and fertilization occurs externally. The fertilized egg settles to the substrate where it becomes attached after just a few hours.

harvesting
Harvest by picking the freshest bladderwrack possible. Make certain that the plant is still alive and attached to its anchor—it's best to collect at the low tide mark or in rock pools. If at all possible the bladderwrack should simply be sun-dried as this gives maximal flavor and nutrient retention.

preserving
When dry, bladderwrack can be cut into pieces or powdered and stored in air-tight boxes, it can also be frozen for future use.

04.
The Rest of the Story

basics, health and recipes

bladderwrack basics
Bladderwrack has a funny name, but it doesn't really match all that it can do. It's actually algae that gets its name from the small air-filled pockets, or bladders, that actually help it to float. But its name doesn’t have much to do with its actual uses for the body.

What is bladderwrack used for?

Bladderwrack is a great salt alternative, but bladderwrack extract is another popular form of the herb. Bladderwrack extract can be used to treat stomach inflammation and forms barriers against gut irritants like stomach acid and other inflammatory foods.

Health benefits

Bladderwrack herb benefits

Much of what bladderwrack does best is actually in the digestive tract. There are several conditions that it can treat. For example, if you’re suffering from constipation, bladderwrack can help to get your digestive system moving again and bring you relief. At the same time, bladderwrack is also used for people suffering from diarrhea. It actually helps restore normal function to the system so that it will work properly.

No one who suffers from heartburn enjoys it. In fact, the pain and burning some of the most miserable feelings you can experience. Bladderwrack can come to the rescue. If you suffer from heartburn or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), bladderwrack can help to relieve your symptoms. You’ll be able to eat your favorite foods without having to suffer later.

If your thyroid is running a little slow, bladderwrack can also help to support normal function. You may want to talk with your healthcare provider to make sure you don’t have a negative interaction with medication you’re already taking. You don’t want to speed things up too much at once. It’s possible that bladderwrack may enhance your metabolism and help you to lose weight more rapidly as well.

The major ingredient in bladderwrack is iodine. While most people in the world have iodized salt that prevents problems, bladderwrack can be a good alternative to that. Iodine is essential in helping the thyroid to work properly. In fact, people with iodine deficiencies often have a thyroid disease called goiter. Of course, avoid bladderwrack if you're allergic to iodine.

Topically, bladderwrack makes a great herb for treating wounds. It helps you to heal faster from minor skin irritations, cuts, and scrapes.

If you’re interested in adding bladderwrack to your herbal repertoire, you can take it in several ways. Most people enjoy it in a tea that is steeped for at least 10 minutes. You may also enjoy taking the herb in capsules or powder form.

What's interesting is that bladderwrack doesn't actually help to keep the bladder healthier. This is one case where the name of the herb doesn't match its function. But if you have problems with metabolism or your digestive system, you'll want to give bladderwrack a try.

Formulas & recipes

Bladderwrack tea recipe

  • Grind into a fine powder using an herb grinder
  • Add ½ tsp to 1 tsp of the powder to a tea bag or tea ball
  • Add boiled water
  • Steep for at least 10 minutes
  • Remove tea bag and enjoy, no sweetener is necessary

How to eat dry bladderwrack

Dry bladderwrack is as versatile as salt and can be added to other herbs or spices to season any savory food. Some enjoy fresh bladderwrack, but dry bladderwrack is much better for kitchen use. It can be sprinkled on any food to add a nice smokey, salty flavor. Dry bladderwrack is sometimes added to natural cosmetic products as well but is mostly used in the kitchen for added flavor.

for educational purposes only

This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

please be advised: 
Before making any changes to your diet you should always consult with your doctor,
especially if you are pregnant, nursing or have existing conditions.