Sea Salt Fertilizers: An Important Organic Gardening Discovery

Updated on July 21, 2019
Doneta Wrate profile image

I have studied organic gardening for 60 years and raised many large gardens. I have read Organic Garden Magazine most of my life

Table of Contents

Here's what you'll find in this article:

  1. Why Should You Use Sea Salt Fertilizers?
  2. 9 Benefits of Sea Salt Fertilizers
  3. 9 Ways to Apply Sea Salt Fertilizers
  4. Extra Tips
  5. Sea Salts, an Economical Fertilizer: Conclusion

Why Should You Use Sea Salt Fertilizers?

The setting was Chicago in the 1940s. Dr. Murray was puzzling over a mystery in American health. In his medical practice, Dr. Murray saw that although the American life span had grown, degenerative diseases such as cancer and chronic illnesses were on the rise. He wrote, "Americans hold the dubious distinction of being among the sickest of populations in modern society."

Dr. Murray noticed that sea animals had few if any of these diseases. For example, fresh water lake trout regularly developed liver cancer at five years old, but sea trout did not.

Dr. Murray knew that sea water held an abundant supply of balanced nutrients best for sustaining a healthy life, such as: sodium, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, and trace amounts of many other minerals. Contrary to this, the soils of farms today are becoming increasing depleted of minerals through bad agriculture processes. Not to mention the natural rainwater run-off drawing nutrients and soils to rivers and running out to sea.

A more recent study revealed that the nutrients in food that were being impaired by soil depletion include protein, calcium, phosphorus, iron, riboflavin, and ascorbic acid, according to a study published in 2004 by researchers at the University of Texas at Austin. The study relied on data of about 43 garden crops spanning 5 decades (1950-1999). Other nutrients that could be compromised by soil depletion, but weren't part of the study, include magnesium, zinc, vitamin B6, and vitamin E.

Dr. Murray theorized that by adding balanced nutrients back to the soil, plants would absorb these nutrients. These plants would become our food, providing us with the elements necessary to throw off disease. Dr. Murray, besides being a physician, was also a biochemist and research scientist. So he purchased a farm and began applying sea water, and later sea salt fertilizer, directly to the soil.

His results were impressive from the start.

Is your food optimized by being grown in properly fertilized soil?
Is your food optimized by being grown in properly fertilized soil? | Source

9 Benefits of Sea Salt Fertilizers

In growing foods properly fertilized with sea salt fertilizers, Dr. Murray found these beneficial results:

  1. Increased plant growth
  2. Larger and more abundant crops
  3. Plants have greater resistance to pests and disease
  4. Food tastes better
  5. Food is slower to decay
  6. Higher levels of vitamins and sugars

Wheat fertilized with 4/10 of a gallon per acre saw this nutritional result:

  • Vitamin B1 increased by 35%
  • Vitamin B2 increased by 10%
  • Niacin increased by 38%
  • Vitamin E increased by 15%

The brand name of sea salt fertilizer used in this case was Ocean Trace.

Dr. Murray next asked: Would this resulting improvement in the food be passed on to improved health for animals? Again, his ideas were proven by his research:

  1. Lowered rates of cancer in mice who had been bred to develop breast cancer and die.
  2. The mice not only lived longer, they were healthier.
  3. The mice had five times more litters. The mice were more fertile.

These are hand spreaders good for evenly spreading sea salt on small gardens.
These are hand spreaders good for evenly spreading sea salt on small gardens. | Source

How to Apply Sea Salt Fertilizer

Here are 9 different ways to apply sea salt fertilizers.

  1. You can apply sea salt by itself mixed with water, or you can mix it with other water soluble fertilizers or fungicides to minimize the number of times to spray. First, dissolve the sea salt in a small amount of water and filter out any sediment. Then put 1 teaspoon of sea salt in 1 gallon of water. Second, combine the sea salt and water in a garden sprayer. Add any fertilizers or fungicides to the sprayer at the recommended rate per gallon. Third, spray the plants until the water begins to run off. Repeat the application every one to two weeks during growing season. (Note: The best time to foliar spray like this is before 8 am or after 6 pm. Plants have little mouths called stoma scattered over the leaves. The stoma open up during these hours and can accept more nutrients.)
  2. If you are near a relatively clean beach, you can dip directly into the ocean and water your plants. In this case, you apply 1200–1300 milliliters per square foot of soil. Of course, you would not want to use sea water from a polluted bay.
  3. Another way is to mix 1 teaspoon of ocean water in 3 tablespoons of water per square foot. Foliar spray with this four times a year, or apply directly to the soil. If you foliar spray, remember to do so when the stoma are open.
  4. Enrich the soil in your garden before planting. Scatter 1 cup sea salt per 100 square feet. Till the sea salt into the top 12 inches of soil. Generously water to dilute the sea salt.
  5. To fertilize your lawn, apply with a spreader 3 pounds of sea salt to every 1500 square feet of grass. Slow water your lawn with a sprinkler or sprinkler system for 15 to 30 minutes.
  6. Fertilize trees every four months. Sprinkle sea salt over the roots of trees 2 tablespoons every 8 square feet. Then slow water with drip, soaker, or bubbler hose to dilute the sea salt.
  7. Give flowers a monthly application. Sprinkle a half cup of sea salt around flowers. Keep the salt at least 3 inches away from the base of the plants. Water well.
  8. Fertilize garden vegetables every two weeks. Mix 3 tablespoons sea salt in 1 gallon of water. Foliar spray with a hand held sprayer.
  9. Sea salt can be used on house plants, too. Mix 2 tablespoons sea salt with 1 gallon water. Use once a month. The solution will keep for three months.

Hand sprayers come in different sizes from 1 gallon to 3 gallons.
Hand sprayers come in different sizes from 1 gallon to 3 gallons. | Source

Extra Tips

Always water outdoor plants after applying sea salt to dilute sodium chloride. Sodium chloride is a natural nutrient that plants need, but too much can cause slowed growth and yellowed foliage.

Seaweed fertilizers and fish emulsion have many good nutrients in them also. But with these two fertilizers, the nutrients have to be changed by micro-organisms first before the plant can use them. Sea minerals are directly available.

Sodium and chloride are in a natural balance in sea minerals. But when part of the sodium chloride is removed, it allows for a higher application rate of the fertilizer than otherwise. This is especially useful for farmers with high salt soils.

A spreader on wheels is good for sea minerals on a lawn or a larger garden area.
A spreader on wheels is good for sea minerals on a lawn or a larger garden area. | Source

Sea Salts, an Economical Fertilizer

Sea salts are an economical, wide-range fertilizer that will give you excellent results. My husband loves to talk with people about gardening. He always tells them about sea salt fertilizers, because they make the food taste so much better and create such healthy plants.

This is one option for watering your garden well after fertilizing. A large area can be covered in a controlled manner by stretching a couple drip hoses out.
This is one option for watering your garden well after fertilizing. A large area can be covered in a controlled manner by stretching a couple drip hoses out. | Source

What kind of gardening do you do?

See results

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

Questions & Answers

    © 2019 Doneta Wrate


      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment
      • Doneta Wrate profile imageAUTHOR

        Doneta Wrate 

        9 months ago from Michigan

        Seaweed is great as a fertilizer in many ways, but it is low in nitrogen. Many people supplement it with fish fertilizers.

      • annart profile image

        Ann Carr 

        9 months ago from SW England

        Yes, seaweed is quite abundant on our beach. Although muddy, I think the sea is clean (it is also a river estuary at the south end). I'll do further research before I try that but it sounds a better solution for me.

        Thank you for that - most helpful, Doneta!


      • annart profile image

        Ann Carr 

        9 months ago from SW England

        Fascinating. I enjoy gardening and having moved house I had to totally re-shape my garden and am now in a position to be able to grow more plants and vegetables.

        I also live close to the beach so I'll try what you suggest. My concern is that salt could actually be detrimental to some plants - the winds here are strong (as often happens close to the sea) and carry salt with them, the result being that some plants are 'burnt' by the stronger breezes. However, I'll read this again and try to follow your advice.

        Informative and interesting! Thank you.


      • Doneta Wrate profile imageAUTHOR

        Doneta Wrate 

        10 months ago from Michigan

        Thank you for your comments

      • Africa Rainey profile image

        Dr Africa L Rainey 

        10 months ago from Arlington Heights, IL

        Great article!

      • Doneta Wrate profile imageAUTHOR

        Doneta Wrate 

        10 months ago from Michigan

        Thank you for your comment. That is an interesting bit of information.

      • Eurofile profile image

        Liz Westwood 

        10 months ago from UK

        This is an interesting article packed with a lot of useful information and advice. As I read your introduction, it reminded me of how I have often noticed that after swimming in the sea, wounds always heal quicker.


      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

      Show Details
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
      ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)