Seaside specialities

Posted on Saturday, June 25th, 2011

Red valerian and a fishing boatOn a recent holiday to the Suffolk coast, I assiduously planned the gardens to visit while I was in the area to ensure I received my dose of greenery, despite holidaying by the sea. Well, I needn’t have bothered! I arrived to discover this eastern English coastline to be full of great swathes of plants in colours and forms as bright and brilliant as any pristinely horicultured garden!

We were fortunate enough to be staying in a beachside property, and from the sea-view patio I could see at least 6 different plant species, including sea kale (Crambe maritima), grasses, sea holly (Eryngium maritima) and sea campion (Silene sp.) poking their way through the pebbles, thriving in these unlikely situations. Further along the beach these were followed by a display of brilliant pink and violets from red valerian (Centranthus ruber) and common mallow (Malva sylvestris), offset by the bright yellow flowers of the yellow horned poppy (Glaucium flavum).

If this wasn’t enough to satisfy my need for greenness, a walk through the nearby Dunwich Heath (National Trust) revealed a patchwork quilt of heathers with bright green ferns thrusting up through them from time to time. All a stone’s through from the beach.

So the next time you’re holidaying near the seaside, don’t look inland for garden inspiration, head seawards and enjoy the shoal of plants living on the shore.

Here are a few images of the seaside delights I found: