Journal of Plant Growth Regulation

, Volume 28, Issue 4, pp 386–399 | Cite as

Seaweed Extracts as Biostimulants of Plant Growth and Development

  • Wajahatullah Khan
  • Usha P. Rayirath
  • Sowmyalakshmi Subramanian
  • Mundaya N. Jithesh
  • Prasanth Rayorath
  • D. Mark Hodges
  • Alan T. Critchley
  • James S. Craigie
  • Jeff Norrie
  • Balakrishan Prithiviraj


Marine algal seaweed species are often regarded as an underutilized bioresource, many have been used as a source of food, industrial raw materials, and in therapeutic and botanical applications for centuries. Moreover, seaweed and seaweed-derived products have been widely used as amendments in crop production systems due to the presence of a number of plant growth-stimulating compounds. However, the biostimulatory potential of many of these products has not been fully exploited due to the lack of scientific data on growth factors present in seaweeds and their mode of action in affecting plant growth. This article provides a comprehensive review of the effect of various seaweed species and seaweed products on plant growth and development with an emphasis on the use of this renewable bioresource in sustainable agricultural systems.


Seaweed Biostimulants Plant growth Plant development Biotic and abiotic stresses Plant-microbe interactions 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wajahatullah Khan
    • 1
    • 5
  • Usha P. Rayirath
    • 1
  • Sowmyalakshmi Subramanian
    • 1
  • Mundaya N. Jithesh
    • 1
  • Prasanth Rayorath
    • 1
  • D. Mark Hodges
    • 2
  • Alan T. Critchley
    • 3
  • James S. Craigie
    • 3
    • 4
  • Jeff Norrie
    • 3
  • Balakrishan Prithiviraj
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plant and Animal SciencesNova Scotia Agricultural CollegeTruroCanada
  2. 2.Atlantic Food and Horticulture Research CentreAgriculture and Agri-Food CanadaKentvilleCanada
  3. 3.Acadian Seaplants LimitedDartmouthCanada
  4. 4.Institute for Marine BiosciencesNational Research Council of CanadaHalifaxCanada
  5. 5.Department of Biochemistry, College of ScienceKing Saud UniversityRiyadhKingdom of Saudi Arabia

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