How to Harvest Duckweed

Overview

Duckweed is a type of plant that floats on top of ponds and grows by absorbing nutrients from its water source. It is an important food for aquatic life, fowl and in some countries, people. Duckweed is self-propagating and is beneficial as a nutritious food, for controlling algae and as a water purifier when used in waste water treatment plants. Duckweed grows in nature and is also farmed for commercial use. Studies are on-going as to Duckweed's viability to be used as ethanol fuel.

Step 1

Place the 5-gallon bucket and the basket along the bank of the pond near the end where you will be harvesting the duckweed. Both should be easily accessible while wading in the pond.

Step 2

Wade into the pond carrying the bamboo pole; starting in the center of the pond.

Step 3

Position the bamboo pole on top of the water and slowly guide it across the top of the water corralling the duckweed as you walk toward one end of the pond.

Step 4

Continue to guide the duckweed until you have it worked into one corner of the pond.

Step 5

Anchor the ends of the bamboo pole on each side of the bank, allowing the main body of the pole to remain in the water to contain the duckweed.

Step 6

Retrieve the basket to harvest the duckweed.

Step 7

Using the basket, scoop the duckweed from the water and pour into the 5-gallon bucket.

Step 8

Continue to harvest duckweed using the basket until you have harvested your quota of duckweed.

Things You'll Need

  • Bamboo pole (preferably slightly shorter than the width of the pond)
  • Plastic sieve or mesh basket
  • Plastic container with drainage holes (5-gallon bucket with holes punched for drainage)

References

  • Food and Agriculture of the United Nations: Harvesting Duckweed
  • Windward Organization: Harvesting Duckweed and Yellowjackets
  • Aquaponics Headquarters: Duckweed Harvest

Who Can Help

  • Canoe.CA: Nature's Pollution Fighter
  • Wiley InterScience: Growing Duckweed
Keywords: how to harvest duckweed, harvesting duckweed, how to harvest Lemnaceae

About this Author

Patricia Hill is a freelance writer who contributes to several sites and organizations, including eHow.com, Associated Content and various private sectors. She is also the managing debt examiner for the Charlotte Examiner.