How to Grow Blue & Green Algae


Blue and green algae are bacteria (cyanobacteria) that act very much like a plant. Blue and green algae need sunlight, warmth and the proper nutrients to grow and thrive. While many people today are experimenting with blue and green algae as an energy source, such algae also can produce toxins that, in quantity, are lethal to large animals.

Step 1

Create a shallow, still pond of water warmed by the sun to 65 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. This will produce the best algae growth.

Step 2

Remove trees or other vegetation, which block sunlight from reaching the pond. Keep the water warm by sunlight, which is a key element for raising blue and green algae.

Step 3

Add 1 lb. of raw or composted manure per 1,000 cubic feet of water to stimulate algae growth. Spread the manure over the top of the water and allow it to settle to the bottom.

Step 4

Harvest the algae using a rake. Add an additional 1/2 lb. of manure that is high in nitrogen and phosphorous per 1,000 cubic feet of water to maintain algae growth over a prolonged period.

Things You'll Need

  • Pond of warm water
  • Phosphorous
  • Nitrogen
  • Rake


  • Do It Yourself: How to Grow Blue-Green Algae
  • University of Vermont: Algae in Farn Ponds
  • Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources: Blue-Green Algae in Wisconsin Waters
  • Oilgae: Blue-Green Algae
Keywords: grow blue-green algae, promote algae growth, growing algae

About this Author

Larry Parr has been a full-time professional freelance writer for more than 30 years. For 25 years he wrote cartoons for TV, everything from SMURFS to SPIDER-MAN.