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  • Writer's pictureJennifer Anderson

Plant Portrait: Groundsel Bush

This tide-loving shrub is among the few salt-tolerant natives that also fare well inland AND flower beautifully, pulling in pollinators. 

Baccharis halimifolia, known colloquially as Groundsel Bush and Sea-myrtle, offers an abundance of white, late-summer blooms August through October.  

If you have a male and a female, you get a bonus: silvery plume-like seeds on the females–perhaps the plant’s most stunning feature.  Those seeds are wind-dispersed and easily germinate.

Groundsel Bush is, well, bushy with lots of branches, and its leaves are coated with a white, waxy layer, giving them a silvery look as well.  The leaves are evergreen during mild winters and the stems have reddish tones.

Birds and small mammals eat and nest in the branches, and butterflies and bees drink the nectar.  

Baccharis halimifolia

Groundsel Bush can be trained to grow as a single-trunk tree and tolerates wet, sandy, salty and dry soils.  It gets 5 to 10 feet high and wide and makes a great hedge or addition to a rain garden.

Fun Fact: Baccharis is an ancient name for the god of wine, and halimifolia refers to its grayish green leaves. 

Plant Portrait is an occasional series spotlighting native plants in 200 words or less.


About the author:

Jennifer Anderson is the owner of Tree Talk Natives, a native tree and plant nursery in Rochester, Mass. She is a former news reporter, loves to talk native plants and can be reached at



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1 comentário

11 de jul.

So delicate looking. Speaks “serenity” to me!

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