Crithmum maritimum

13 Aug

Crithmum maritimum (28/07/2014, Botanique National de Brest, France)

Crithmum maritimum (28/07/2014, Botanique National de Brest, France)

Position: Full sun

Flowering period: Summer

Soil: Moist, well drained

Eventual Height: 30cm

Eventual Spread: 30cm

Hardiness: 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b, 10a

Family: Apiaceae

Crithmum maritimum is an evergreen herbaceous perennial with a spreading habit. Its mid blue/ green leaves are fleshy, pinnately divided with its leaflets being held vertically and aromatic. Its green/ cream flowers are terminal compound umbels. Its fruit are achenes.

Crithmum maritimum Flower (28/07/2014, Botanique National de Brest, France)

Crithmum maritimum Flower (28/07/2014, Botanique National de Brest, France)

Crithmum maritimum, commonly known as Rock Samphire or Sea Fennel, is native to the coastal regions of south and west of Britain and Ireland, the west and Mediterranean coasts of Europe, North Africa and the Black Sea. In its native habitat it grows on cliffs and rocks by the sea. This plant has been historically collected as a food plant rich in vitamin C. In the UK the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 has made it illegal to gather Crithmum maritimum plants from the wild.

The etymological root of the binomial name Crithmum is thought to come from the ancient Greek word krithmon meaning ‘barley’, as its seeds are similar to that plant. Maritimum is from the Latin meaning ‘near by the sea’, referring to this plants preferred growing location.

The landscape architect may find Crithmum maritimum useful as an attractive native plant for inclusion in a rock garden planting scheme. It is also very suitable for planting in maritime conditions.

Crithmum maritimum Leaf (28/07/2014, Botanique National de Brest, France)

Crithmum maritimum Leaf (28/07/2014, Botanique National de Brest, France)

Ecologically, Crithmum maritimum flowers are attractive to pollinating insects.

Crithmum maritimum prefers moist, sandy, well-drained soils. It tolerates most pH of soil including very alkaline soils. It will tolerate nutritionally poor soils. It will tolerate saline soils.

Crithmum maritimum requires little maintenance.

Davis Landscape Architecture

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: