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Rock Samphire

A common plant of the Dorset coast around shingle beaches but especially at the foot of cliffs and along land slips.


  • Rock Samphire: hands off

    Post date: Sunday, 31 July, 2016 - 21:30

    Rock samphire (Crithmum maritimum) is a common plant of the western and southern coasts of Britain around shingle beaches and especially at the foot of cliffs and along land slips. Samphire is quite a common name for coastal plants and rock samphire is a member of the carrot family and is not related to the golden samphire which is a daisy or to marsh samphire (also known as glasswort).

    It is quite a distinctive plant with fleshy, almost wiry stems and leaves and pale green flowers that do, in time, turn a little creamy in colour. It flowers from June to August and is well established here in Dorset.

    Rock samphire is an edible plant with a hot, spicy flavour and it used to be harvested in large quantities and taken to market in London. Whilst some people still collect it today the removal of any plant from the wild is now illegal and they should not do so. It has been grown as a cultivated crop and it is also imported from overseas where protection is less rigid.



Common Name Rock Samphire
Scientific Name Crithmum maritimum
Species Group Carrot Family Umbelliferae
Interest Level
Look for
Identification Notes
Primary Habitat
Family Carrot family - Umbelliferea
Status Locally common
Flower Colour Group Yellow
  • 06 - June
  • 07 - July
  • 08 - August
  • 09 - September
  • 10 - October
Preferred Environment
Look for Pale yellow flower heads on fleshy plant near sea
Additional Identification Notes
Similar Species

The records for this species have been organised into reports, charts, maps and photos. Click a pic below to see the detail:

Notebook Sites List Distribution Map Some Charts Some Photographs Recent Records Guidance Notes

To see related species click here: 

Carrot Family Umbelliferae