The narrow centimetre-wide straps of Thongweed, Himanthalia elongata (L.) Gray, over two metres in length, are shed from the basal disc of this species of seaweed when the reproductive products are ripe. Vast quantities of these seaweed tapes are washed onto Jurassic Coast seashores. They are often turned and tossed by the waves – rolled around until they become tangled and knotted. The photographs show a selection of the naturally-occurring knots, skeins, patterns, and arrangements of this olive-green seaweed. These accumulations of weed were found on the pebbles, stones and gravels of shingle beaches in Dorset.
Revision of a post first published 4 November 2009 as Natural arrangements of Thongweed on shingle
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4 Replies to “Tangled Thongweed”
You’re the queen of patterns when it comes to blog photos.
The close-up thongweed pictures remind me of spinach-flavored noodles; thus does the culinary mingle with the artistic (at least in my imagination).
Thank you, Steve. I seem to seek and find patterns everywhere I look, don’t I?. I know what you mean about the analogies to food. The thongweed straps do look like tagliatelle verde. I often describe the appearance of things with reference to food – like pebbles from the Rhossili seashore that look like sugared almonds, and boulders on Osmington beach shaped like burger buns!