Can You Use Seasol On Orchids? (Explained)

Can you use seasol on orchids

Whilst Seasol is 100% Australian-made, it is becoming increasingly popular elsewhere in the world and for good reason too!

As we all look for different ways to cultivate our flowers I have heard more and more people ask, can you use Seasol on orchids? 

So I thought I’d write a quick article answering this and delving a bit deeper into Seasol and its benefits.

Without further ado let’s dive in!

Can You Use Seasol On Orchids?

Seasol can have multiple benefits for orchids. It encourages stronger root development, protects them against stresses such as being transplanted and extremes of weather and keeps them flowering for longer. Seasol calls itself a “complete garden health treatment” and it can benefit all kinds of plants.

The Interesting Story of How Seasol Came to Be

Before we go into the question of can you give orchids Seasol, I thought I’d go into the history of the product as there is a little bit of a back story that is quite interesting.

Or I found it interesting anyway, if this isn’t for you, hop straight down to the next section – I won’t be offended!

The story of Seasol began back in 1974 on the north-west coast of the Australian island state of Tasmania.

A chemist called Ralph Bayer noticed cattle grazing on castaway kelp and wondered if plants might benefit from the nutrients in the seaweed.

After taking it into the lab and processing it, trials revealed the kelp-derived formula had a hugely beneficial effect on plants and significantly increased their root growth and blooms.

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The product, named Seasol, began to be produced and was very popular in the local area with farmers and commercial growers.

And that is how it might have stayed, a product that was popular in and around the North-East corner of Tasmania, had Eric Haynes not stepped in.

Eric Haynes had arrived in Australia in the mid-1950s with his wife Molly and son Gary, moving from the coal mines of Sheffield in England to Melbourne, where he spent time as a professional soccer player.

A born entrepreneur, Eric had run several successful businesses in Australia when he heard about Seasol in 1983.

He bought the business that same year and immediately set about transforming it from a local business into a national one and, eventually, an international one.

Although Eric died in 2017, the business is going stronger than ever and is now the top-selling liquid garden treatment in all of Australia.

What is Seasol?

Seaweed on beach

Seasol is quick to point out that it is not a fertilizer as it contains very low levels of nitrogen and phosphorus.

Instead, it bills itself as “a complete garden health treatment”. 

It is made from two species of seaweed – Bull Kelp (Durvillaea potatorum), Chile Bull Kelp (Durvillaea Antarctica) and Knotted Kelp (Ascophyllum nodosum).

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Essentially Seasol is a soil conditioner or tonic, acting as a pick-me-up for plants. 

It helps plants become stronger and more resilient so they can cope with changing weather conditions, such as heat, frost and drought.

Perhaps the best way to think of it is like a multi-vitamin for plants, to improve their immune system and encourage flowering and fruiting, etc.

How Does Seasol Benefit Orchids?

Seasol has multiple benefits for orchids:

  • It encourages stronger root development, due to its growth stimulants.
  • Used every ten days to two weeks throughout the winter, it prevents orchids from being stressed out by colder weather and allows them to return to a normal growing routine as conditions get warmer.
  • It helps orchids cope with transplant shock and will stimulate new root growth and activate microbes in the soil to produce a soft fertilizer to develop roots.
  • It will keep your orchid flowering for longer.

The one downside is that using it excessively for orchids potted in sphagnum moss can cause algae to grow on the sphagnum.

However, this is easily avoidable if used to the right levels.

How to Use Seasol

So the official Seasol website advises using Seasol with PowerFeed.

There is some logic here as PowerFeed is a fertilizer produced by the same company that makes Seasol!

If you apply them together as a foliar spray mix 20ml of Seasol concentrate with 20ml of PowerFeed concentrate for every 9 liters of water. Then spray weekly, unless plants are flowering or the temperature is over 25℃.

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If you are applying directly to the potting medium, mix 30ml of Seasol concentrate and 50ml of PowerFeed concentrate for every 9 liters of water, every two to four weeks.

A few extra points of note:

  • I would always advise you spot test before you use Seasol on a plant, just to make sure it responds positively.
  • It is particularly useful when transplanting plants, during extreme temperatures or when an orchid has been targeted by pests, root rot or fungus.
  • If you are applying Seasol to a sick plant, you will want to apply it more often until it returns to health.
  • It can be applied all year round, as opposed to just during the growing season as is the case with fertilizer.
  • As it is virtually phosphorous-free, it can be used on any plant in your garden, whether indoors or outdoors.

Final Thoughts

When used correctly Seasol can have outstanding effects on the root growth of orchids. 

At the same time, it can help them deal with a number of stresses.

So I think the answer is quite evident, Seasol can definitely be used on orchids, in fact using it can benefit them greatly.

Its combination of acids, bioactive compounds and plant nutrients has multiple benefits for all kinds of plants and has contributed to it going from merely an Australian institution to a product known around the world.

It calls itself a “complete garden health treatment” and quite rightly so.

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