Ulva ohnoi Hiraoka et Shimada sp. nov. (Ulvales, Ulvophyceae) is described from southern and western Japan and is characterized by the following combination of features: (i) the large, fragile, easily torn thalli, which are 30–55 μm thick in the upper and middle regions and often have microscopic marginal teeth; (ii) the production of zoids in the upper marginal region; (iii) a regular alternation of dioecious gametophytes and a sporophyte; (iv) the production of free-floating thalli from torn-off attached thalli, which reproduce vegetatively by fragmentation and form green tides in summer to autumn; (v) disorderly arranged cells that are polygonal or quadrangular in the upper and middle regions; and (vi) the chloroplast covering the outer face of cell, with 1–3 pyrenoids. Ulva ohnoi differs from U. armohcana Dion et al., U. fasciata Delile, U. reticulata Forsskal, U. scandinavica Eliding and U. spiulosaOkamura et Segawa, which all possess microscopic marginal serrations, in thallus shape, cell shape or life history pattern. It is also distinguished from morphologically similar species by sequences of the nuclear encoded internal transcribed spacers and the 5.8S ribosomal RNA gene and the plastid encoded large subunit of ribulose-l,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxgenase gene. Furthermore, crossing tests demonstrate that there is a reproductive boundary between U. ohnoi and the most closely related species, U. fasciata and U. reticulata.