Practical ecological knowledge for the temperate reader.

Suaeda calceoliformis - Seablite

Family: Amaranthaceae (Amaranth family) (Previously in Chenopodiaceae) [E-flora]

"General: Annual herb from a taproot; stems decumbent to erect, solitary, freely branched from the base, 20-50 cm tall/long." "Leaves: Stem leaves alternate, fleshy, glaucous, narrow and rounded, 1-3 cm long, reduced gradually during flowering, upper leaves reduced, scarcely 5 mm long." "Flowers: Inflorescence of small, stalkless, greenish flowers, solitary in the axils of the bracts; calyx lobes unequal, 1 or more becoming keeled or crested." "Fruits: Thin, papery-walled, membranous envelopes; seeds horizontal, black, smooth or fine wrinkled, 1.0-1.7 mm wide." [IFBC-E-flora]

"Habitat / Range Wet salt marshes, beaches and saline and alkaline habitats in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; frequent in SC and SE BC, rare along the coast; N to YT, E to NF and S to TX and CA." [IFBC-E-flora]

Status: Native [E-flora]

Food Use

Suaeda Sp. - Seablite

"Species In Genus: 115 species: worldwide, saline and alkaline soils." [Jepson]

Local Species;

  1. Suaeda calceoliformis - seablite [E-flora]

Use of Suaeda Sp.

SEA BLITE (Suaeda species) ; "Sea blite, Suaeda depressa, ranges from Kenai Peninsula, Alaska, coastally to California. S. occidentalis occurs in alkaline areas; its range is sporadic. It has been reported at Fort Yukon, Alaska, the southwest Yukon, and southward to California. Other species also occur in our area. All are reported edible." [Schofield]

Hazards (Suaeda Sp.)

"Said to induce a persistent black diarrhea, even death, in grazing sheep (KAB)." [MPB-Duke]

Food Use (Suaeda Sp.)

Other Use (Suaeda Sp.)

Medicinal Use (Suaeda Sp.)

Activities: "Emetic (f; KAB; NAD); Laxative (f; KAB); Vulnerary (f; KAB)." [MPB-Duke]

Indications: "Dyspnea (f; GHA); Constipation (f; KAB); Gingivosis (f; GHA); Headache (f; GHA); Hysteria (f; GHA); Nausea (f; GHA); Neurosis (f; GHA); Odontosis (f; GHA); Ophthalmia (f; GHA; KAB; NAD); Sore (f; KAB; NAD); Vertigo (f; GHA); Wound (f; KAB)." [MPB-Duke]

Use of Other, Non-local, Suaeda Sp.

"The ashes of Suaeda fruticosa Forssk., Suaeda indica Moq., and Suaeda nudiflora Moq. were an important source of mineral alkali in the Middle East. The leaves of Suaeda maritima Dum. (Sea blite) are edible. Suaeda vera Forssk. ex J. Gmelin is employed as camel fodder. A black dye is obtained from Suaeda suffrutescens Wats. (Desert seepweed)." [Middleditch KP]

"Arabians use stem and leaf decoctions (S. aegyptiaca) in gargles for gum and tooth problems (GHA)." [MPB-Duke]

Suaeda arborescens · Food-Pima Spice Added as flavoring to greens or cactus fruits. (146:78) · Other-Pima Containers Used moistened with cottonwood to line pits for roasting saltbush overnight. (32:23) Layer of plant used to cover the embers in a baking pit. (32:36) Cooking Tools Used to cover coals in cooking pits. (146:71) Used to line saltbush roasting pits. (146:78) [Moerman NAEth]

Suaeda australis: "Settlers used the leaves as a vegetable and pickle." [Low WFP]

Sea-Blite (Suaeda californica) "Sea-Blite is to be found in the salt marshes along the coast from central California to Lower California." [EUCP]

"In tianguis of central Mexico, some of the preferred edible greens include: seepweed (Suaeda edulis),..." [Lira EM]

"Suaeda fruticosa is used as emetic and to cure sores on camel back" [Dagar ASI] "Asian Indians eat the green leaves of S. nudiflora (= fruticosa), a source of sajji (DEP)." [MPB-Duke] "Asian Indians suggest an oily application of the wooly growths of branch tips (S. fruticosa) for the sores of camels (KAB)." [MPB-Duke] Flowers and seeds of S. fruticosa used in Tunisia for skin diseases. [Rai EthPlants]

"Suaeda maritima (L.) Dumort. Annual Sea Blite - Green flowers eaten" [EMNMPV.7]

Suaeda moquinii (Torr.) Greene, Mojave Seablite · Drug-Hopi Analgesic Poultice of dried leaves used on sore places. (as S. intermedia 190:161) Ceremonial Medicine Plant used to bathe the doctor before administering to patients. (as Dondia fruticosa 200:31, 74) Navajo, Kayenta Gastrointestinal Aid Plant used for bleeding bowels. (as S. torreyana 205:21) Paiute Dermatological Aid Crushed fresh plants rubbed on chickenpox to stop itching and to dry sores. Kidney Aid Decoction of plant taken for kidney trouble. Misc. Disease Remedy Crushed fresh plants rubbed on chickenpox to stop itching and to dry sores. Urinary Aid Decoction of plant taken for bladder trouble. Shoshoni Kidney Aid Decoction of plant taken for kidney trouble. Urinary Aid Decoction of plant taken for bladder trouble. (as S. torreyanavar. ramosissima 180:143) . Food-Navajo Porridge Seeds boiled into a gruel. (as S. torreyana 55: 45) Pima, Gila River Unspecified Leaves pit roasted and eaten. (133:7) · Other-Papago Cooking Tools Used to line baking pits for roasting chollas. (as Dondia nigra 34: 15) [Moerman NAEth]

"Suaeda microphilla Pall. Illustr. is widespread plant in the degraded lands of Kur-Araz lowland . This plant is considered as the high quality fodder in the winter pastures (Shukurov et al. 2008 ; Gurbanov 2009)." [Ozturk PPT]

Suaeda suffrutescens S. Wats., Desert Seepweed · Food-Papago Spice Leaves and stalks lined inside cooking holes to give cactus fruits a salty flavor. Pima Spice Leaves and stalks lined in- side cooking holes to give cactus fruits a salty flavor. (as Dondia suf frutescens 95:264) Added as flavoring to greens or cactus fruits. (146:78) . Other-Papago Cooking Tools Leaves and stalks used to line cooking pits. Pima Cooking Tools Leaves and stalks used to line cooking pits. (as Dondia suffrutescens 95:262) [Moerman NAEth]

"Suaeda vermiculata Forssk. ex. J. F. Gmel. (Chenopodiaceae). suwwâd. The green parts of this plant were burned in Kuwait for smoke that was inhaled to treat asthma (Al-Kalifa and Sharkas 1984). The stems were smoked for the same purpose elsewhere in the Arab world (Ghazanfar 1994)." [UAPDS] "Arabians use the stems of S. vermiculata to alleviate breathing difficulties (GHA)." [MPB-Duke]


Selected Plants Whose Extracts and Essential Oils Have Anti-Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus Activities;


"In another halophyte Suaeda physophora, Na+ and NO3-, when present together in the culture medium, stimulated lateral root growth, whereas in the presence of 10 mmol L−1 NO3- in the saline medium with increase in salinity, the concentrations of NO3- and total N were remarkably reduced in roots but were unaffected in shoots (Jun-Feng et al., 2010)." [Pessarakli HPCP]


"The increasing concentration of EDTA does not have a significant effect on the amount of metal chelates (Manouchehri et al. 2006). It has been mostly observed that increasing the dose of chelating agent increases the mobility of metal (Bareen and Tahira 2010; Zhao et al. 2011) so a proper dose which is enough to mobilize the metal should be selected to reduce the risk of leaching. Zhao et al. (2011) have suggested a dose of 5 mmol kg-1 of soil to minimize leaching, whereas Bareen and Tahira (2011) have suggested a dose of only 1 mmol kg-1 of soil to minimize leaching hazard, provided effective and high biomass producing indigenous plants like Suaeda fruticosa are used for phytoextraction." [Alloway TPFB]

Salt Remediation: "Na + and Cl − hyperaccumulating halophyte species such as Suaeda maritima, S. portulacastrum, S. fruticosa, S. salsa, S. calceoliformis, ... are found to accumulate high concentrations of salt in their aboveground tissues and consenquently, to upgrade saline soils by harvesting the plants on a regular basis." [Ozturk PPT]

"Investigation of some Suaeda (C.A.Mey) Mog species revealed their capacity to accumulate salt ions and to decrease the soil salt content in their habitat, consequently, to increase the area of land available for cultivation and the yield of crops grown on the marginal saline soil (Sharma and Gupta 1986; Zhao 1991). S.salsa normally growing in highly saline soils 4.5 % reduced Na content of the soil at depth 20–30 cm at a density of 15 plants m −2 and 6.7 % with density of 30 plants m −2 (Zhao 1991). As salt accumulating halophytes plant S.maritima also was found to exhibit greater accumulation of salts in their tissues compartmentalizing the toxic Na+ in their vacuoles. During 4 months sodium chloride was removed by this plant in amount of 504 kg from 1 ha saline land (Ravindran et al. 2007). Studies with naturally growing perennial halophyte S.fruticosa reported that more than 1088.6 kg of salt can be removed from 1 acre by a single harvest of the aerial parts in the fall each year (Chaudhri et al. 1964). These Suaeda species can be considered to be successfully used for accumulation of NaCl in highly salinized areas for crop production after a few repeated cultivation and harvest." [Ozturk PPT]

"Milić et al. (2012) indicate that halophyte species Salicornia europaea, Suaeda maritima and Salsola sada may accumulate significant amount of salt ions from saline soils and therefore remediate land to the point where native plants can invade and become established or the site can be returned to agricultural productivity." [Ozturk PPT]


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