Salicornia virginica

Salicornia virginica L.

Common Names: Woody Glasswort, Wild Coral, Guinea Bead

Family: Amaranthaceae

Habit: Salicornia virginica grows as a low succulent, forming large mats from rhizomes that branch frequently, to 50 cm (usually shorter) with the lower stems becoming woody over time. The stems are photosynthetic becoming reddish brown with age.  The leaves are highly reduced as scales

The incomplete, perfect, actinomorphic flowers are in 3 flowered cymes embedded in the stems forming a spike at the terminus of branches. The calyx is reduced to 3-4 teeth and there is no corolla.  There are 2 stamens.  The superior ovary has a single locule and seed that is covered in curved hairs.

Habitat: Salicornia virginica grows in saline areas along the coast or edges of Mangrove flats.

Distribution: Salicornia virginica occurs on all island groupings within the Lucayan Archipelago as well as the eastern, southern and western United States, the entire Caribbean region as well as Europe and northern Africa.

Medicinal/Cultural/Economic usage: Salicornia virginica is not known to be used medicinally in the Lucayan Archipelago.