Information on Sea-purslane

Common Name: Sea-purslane
Scientific Name: Atriplex portulacoides
Irish Name: Lus an Ghaill
Family Group: Chenopodiaceae
Distribution: View Map (Courtesy of the BSBI)
Flowering Period

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

This is a sprawling, clumpy perennial undershrub which spreads its way across the dry, upper reaches of salt-marshes, mainly along our east and south coasts. It's a mealy, silvery plant and its spreading branches can reach 100 cm. Brown stems bear very small yellow-green wind-pollinated flowers in short spikes in the leaf axils, the stamens and styles on separate flowers. They bloom from July to October The grey-green leaves of this evergreen shrub are ovate at the lower part of the plant with narrow leaves further up. This is a native plant and it belongs to the Chenopodiaceae family.

I first recorded this plant growing near the South Wall, Dublin in 2006 and I photographed it at Bannow Island, Co Wexford in 2009. 

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

The leaves of Sea-purslane are edible, with a crunchy texture; however they would need to be washed in several changes of water to remove the sand completely.