Factsheets for Brown Seaweeds (phylum Phaeophyta)

Genus: Lessonia Trade names: lessonia Symbol: LE
AuthorityBory de Saint-Vincent Type species: Lessonia fuscescens Bory de Saint-Vincent
Commercial species:  nigriscens (NIG), trabeculata (TRA)
Common names: Birnentang, Brown kelp, Giant bladder kelp, Giant Kelp
Classification: Eukaryota, Phylum Heterokontophyta, Order Laminariales, Family Lessoniaceae.
AlgaeBase names and species:  20 names - 10 current as of 12-2001.
Comprehensive lists of common names , generic & specific names can be found at AlgaeBase. >>Click here<<  for SuriaLink's policy on names.
SuriaLink SeaPlant Utility Rating
Useful food & alginate source - wild harvest.
Careful management of harvest required to prevent habitat damage.
Lessonia plants are usually olive green to nearly black and up to 6 m long. Holdfast, up to 50 cm in diameter with variable number of stipes 2-3 m long and up to 4 cm in diameter. Stipes divide dichotomously 2-3 times then become flat, lanceolate blades with straight, denticulate margins. Holdfast formed of interwoven haptera that entangle and fuse to produce a single large unit.  Holdfasts may form cavities used as habitat by diverse invertebrate species.
Attach to rocks in the intertidal and low subtidal in exposed or moderately protected habitats where they are generally the dominant species.

click images & go to sources

Lessonia production
click country to go to GIS
Tons per annum
wild harvest
Tons per annum
Chile 24,754 0


24,754 0
Approximate annual production figures from recent years are as above.
Biology & Agronomy
Wild harvest.
Contain alginates.
We have several monographs in progress covering analytical procedures post-harvest treatment and process technology. Check the processing index for available web pages and monographs. 
Products, Uses & Applications
Commercial source of alginates.
List of species' uses and community affiliations
Genus GenID SpID Species Uses Communities
Lessonia LE NIG nigrescens FA, FI, FF, IA, PA AI, BP
Lessonia LE NIG nigrescens FA, FI, FF, IA, PA AI, BP
Lessonia LE TRA trabeculata FA, FI, FF, IA, PA AI, BP

click to relevant uses or communities on the index/legend table below>>>

    to uses                                                    to communities  
Lessonia is most strongly associated with the Agri-Industry and  Biopolymer communities.
 Navigate please contact us with news & views
SiteIndex | SiteOnOnePage | InfoIndex | Events | Links | Monographs | Advisors | Handbook | Communities | GIS | ContactUs | About | Join

Making, trading, buying or selling seaplants and products? Go to...

Info for 20,000+ spp. of
 seaplants at 

The copyright owners of images on this site agree to single, not-for-profit use for educational purposes and on  web-sites provided that proper acknowledgement is made of their rights. Please cite http://www.surialink.com/ Legal Notice 2003. All rights reserved by SuriaLink.com | Terms | Privacy