Flowers & Blooms

The Sea Holly: A Striking Addition to Your Garden

The Sea Holly is a striking and unusual plant you might consider for your garden. It is a good choice because it can really add color to your garden with its beautiful flowers. This plant is not really famous among gardeners but it sure deserves to be used more. It is beautiful, unique and produces many colorful flowers.

The Sea Holly (Eryngium maritimum) is known for its deep purple and blue flowers set off by colored bracts. It has a very striking appearance. This plant is also known as blue thistle and it’s actually a member of the carrot family.

The plant is usually branched, with each stem tipped with oblong flower heads in varying shades of purple, violet and blue. The plant has green spiny and leaf-like bracts that emerge from the center top of the each flower head.

Planting and Care

It’s best to start the Sea Holly from seeds. Like with other wild flower seeds, it’s best co lightly cover them and plant them in late summer or early spring. The seeds will germinate unevenly and lie for about 8 to 10 weeks before sprouting.

The Sea Holly doesn’t demand special care or soil requirements. However, it needs full sunlight to thrive, so pay attention to this when choosing where to plant it. Water it occasionally (make sure to never over water it) and it will reach a height of about two to four feet.

The Sea Holly

The plant will give beautiful violet, purple and blue flowers you can use for winter bouquets. You can dry flowers on long stems in the shade and the vivid color will remain throughout the whole season or even longer. For dried flowers, you can add a bit gold or silver paint if the sun has faded the natural colors. You may also dry deeply cut foliage in the shade and it will retain its bright green color for a long time.

Photo credit: Eva the Weaver via photopin cc