Shore leave

Dulse huntingMy friend Susan and I gathered seaweed today. The weather was bright and cool, not too warm for hard work, and we’re still pre-mosquito season.  We arrived at 1:00 p.m., dead low tide, for the best picking – wet seaweed is incredibly heavy while the stuff that’s had half a day to dry is just like paper. The tide here runs about 12′, from the dark wet rocks on the right to dry weed on the left of the photo. The channel runs deep and fast by this beach and alternates between leaving huge bunkers of seaweed behind and scrubbing it all away, even taking the rosa rugosa that divide the sand from the freshwater swamp just inland, that today was  filled with bright green skunk cabbages.

Most of what we gathered today is Dulse, palmaria palmata, loaded with sand and brine shrimp (which the robins will eat for the first few days). The fronds will decay quickly  in the garden and add minerals and nutrients. And it gives us a great excuse to go to the beach.

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