Sea sandwort

Juicy, edible leaves

Sea sandwort, photo Jussi Helimäki.

The juicy-leaved sea sandwort (Honckenya peploides) is a coastal pioneer plant. Its roots keep sand in place, preventing erosion. It is unafraid of salt, and can even survive occasional submersion in sand and seawater.

Due to growing in dense stands, the sea sandwort is quite resistant to erosion. However, on Lauttasaari island it has completely disappeared from Itälahti beach and nearly disappeared from Hevosenkenkälahti beach. The are, however, some sea sandworts growing on the peaceful Sisä-Hattu island. Sea sandwort leaves are edible.