Information on Wild Celery

Common Name: Wild Celery
Scientific Name: Apium graveolens
Irish Name: Smaileog
Family Group: Apiaceae
Distribution: View Map (Courtesy of the BSBI)
Flowering Period


Click for list of all flowering by month
Wild Celery is not easily confused with other wild plants on this web site.


Wild celery is a plant of mainly coastal ground – be it in salt-marshes or brackish ditches, by sea walls or streams – but it is rarely found inland. From June to August, it bears tiny, greenish-white flowers in terminal, short-stalked or unstalked umbels of 6-10 unequal rays, reaching 1 metre in height. There are no bracts or bracteoles and these umbels are borne on stout, erect, hairless, grooved, hollow stems. The leaves are shiny, with the lower pinnate or bi-pinnate, the upper trifoliate. The leaflets are diamond-shaped and coarsely lobed. The whole plant has a strong smell of celery. This is an uncommon native biennial plant which belongs to the Apiaceae or Carrot family. 

I first saw and photographed Wild Celery near Campile in Co Wexford when it was pointed out to me by a kind fellow-botanist, Paula O’Meara. 

If you are satisfied you have correctly identified this plant, please submit your sighting to the National Biodiversity Data Centre

Celery, Wild
Celery, Wild

In herbal medicine, benefits such as blood-cleansing, blood pressure reduction and kidney cleansing have been claimed for Wild Celery. However, great care needs to be taken and guidance from healthcare professionals should always be sought first.

This species is also known as Smallage.