Practical ecological knowledge for the temperate reader.

Seabeach Sandwort - Honckenya peploides

Family: Pink - Caryophyllaceae Family
Other Names: seaside sandplant[E-flora]

Ilustration Honckenya peploides clean [Wiki]


  1. Honckenya peploides ssp. major [E-flora]

"Honckenya peploides is a PERENNIAL growing to 0.2 m (0ft 8in) by 1 m (3ft 3in) at a medium rate. It is hardy to zone (UK) 5 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from May to August, and the seeds ripen from Jul to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects, wind, wind-blown sand, self.The plant is self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure." [PFAF]

General: "Succulent perennial herb from a deep taproot and slender rhizomes; forming mats to 80 cm across or more; stems numerous, trailing, usually freely branching, glabrous, flowering stems prostrate to erect, 5-40 cm tall/long." [IFBC-E-flora]
Leaves: "Basal leaves lacking; stem leaves opposite, 3-10 pairs or more, from lanceolate to egg-shaped, sharp-pointed to obtuse, 1-4 cm long, 3-20 mm wide, fleshy, yellowish-green, glabrous, often with sterile axillary shoots; stipules lacking." [IFBC-E-flora]
Flowers: "Inflorescence of solitary or a few flowers in the upper leaf axils, perfect or unisexual; petals 5, greenish-white, egg-shaped, 2-3 mm long; sepals 5, egg-shaped to lanceolate, 4-7 mm long, glabrous." [IFBC-E-flora]
Fruits: "Capsules globose or nearly so, 6-10 mm long, 3- to 5-valved; seeds chestnut brown, 3-4.5 mm long, smooth." [IFBC-E-flora]

Habitat / Range Moist sandy beaches and grassy shorelines in the lowland zone; common along the coast; N to AK, YT and NT and S to NW OR. [IFBC-E-flora]

Origin Status: Native [E-flora]

Edible Uses

Honckenya peploides major Beach Greens, Seabeach - spring & summer - Leaves, stems consumed by Alaskan eskimos. Also stored. [Helaine_Selin] Aerial parts consumed in Sweden [Tardio MWEP]

Medicinal Use

Nutritional Information

Seabeach-Sandwort – Arenaria peploides

Part: Leaves Per 100 g fresh weight


Requires a well-drained soil and an open sunny position. Plants are tolerant of short periods of immersion in salt water[17]. When well sited, the plant can spread quite freely at the roots[K]. Grows well in an outdoor bed at Kew[K].[PFAF]

Seed - sow March in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant them out in the summer. Division in early spring. Very easy, larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.[PFAF]


Honckenya Species

  1. Honckenya peploides - seabeach sandwort [E-flora]. [TSFTK][PCBC] - Misspelled in both as 'Honkenya' (This does not appear to be a different species)


Page last modified on Feb 10, 2024