Perennials & Grasses


Front of Dune


1-Ammophilia breviligulata (Beach Grass) Tall, thin spreading by runners to colonize open sand.


2-Artemisia stellerana (Beach wormwood)Can exist down to surfline, persistent leaves, spreader rooting along stem length, important first line of defense,circumpolar.


3-Honkenya peploides (Sea Beach Sandwort) Thick succulent leaves clasping stem, small yellow flower, seed is scarce, roots easily from cuttings.


4-Lathrus japonicus (Beach pea) Thick bluish long-oval leaves along a sturdy stem, colorful purple pea-like flowers, can colonize large areas, loves drought, spreads by seed.


5-Solidago sempervirens (Seaside Goldenrod) Thick fleshy leaves, persistent in winter, generates lots of biomass, large leaf surface for cover, clumps get large, spreads easily from seed, ultimate beach pioneer.



Middle of Dune


1-Andropogon scoparius, A. ternaricus, A. virginicus (Bluestem) Excellent short to mid-size clump warm season grass. Mid dune is pushing it a little but they can be found there.


2-Chryopsis falcata (Sickle leaf Aster) Low (6”) clump forming, very thin leaves, yellow flowers in late summer, prolific seed spreader.


3-Lechea maritime (Pinweed) Clump forming, small leaves running up straight stem.


4-Panicum amarum, P virginiana (Switch grass) Found in mid-dune in bays or back of the dune back with ocean influences. Tall clump forming, persistent winter habit, good  cover and food for wildlife.



Back of Dune


1-Anaphalis margueritacea (Pearly Everlasting) Low growing mat with wooly whitish flower spikes, good seed spreader.

2-Carex pensylvanica (Pennsylvania Sedge)  8-12” clump forming, rhizome spreader, attractive glossy grass like leaves, grows in sun to shade. 


3-Chryopsis mariana (Maryland Golden Aster) Low rosette with pretty bright spikes in late summer, spreads easily from seed.


4-Deschampsia flexuosa (Hair Grass) Low clump forming cool season grass, late spring flowers on wavy stems, good for shade.


5-Eupatorium hyssopifolium (Hyssop Leaf Eupatorium) thin leaves on two foot stem, white flat topped flower in late summer, mixes well into woody and open areas, easy from seed.


6-Opuntia humifusa (Prickly Pear Cactus) Lanky flat pads from a central stem, sprawls along the ground, pads have long spikes and very short hard to remove spines, large open yellow flower in early summer, spreads by pads and seed.




Woody Plants


Middle of Dune


1-Arcostaphylos uva-ursi (Bearberry) Low growing (4”) evergreen spreader, pretty small white-pink urn shaped flowers followed by persistent red berries, forms dense colonies.


2-Hudsonia tomentosa, H. ericoides  Low spreading grey branched evergreen, erect habit, excellent colonizer.


3-Myrica pensylvanica (Bayberry) Shrub to 12’ but height controlled by environmental factors, thick waxy aromatic leaves, multi-stemmed habit, waxy fruit, rhizomous.


4-Prunus maritime (Beach Plum) Grows to 10’ but most often low growing, entire green leaf, blue-purple fruit essential for dune wildlife, excellent wind break.


5-Rosa virginiana (Beach rose) Most often low and sprawling, small leaves on bright red stem, upright persistent red fruit, excellent clump former for severe spots.


6-Toxicodendron radicans (Poison Ivy)- Infamous for producing nasty rashes, telltale 3 shiny leaflets, hairy stem, white fruit loved by birds, covers large areas.




Back of Dune


1-Amelanchier canadensis (Shad) Small to medium size tree, most often clump forming, early white flowers forming red fruit quickly eaten by birds, small leaves.


2-Aronia arbutifolia (Chokeberry) Tall clump forming shrub in areas with adequate moisture, white flowers in spring followed by fruit quickly devoured by birds.


3-Juniperus virginana (Eastern Red Cedar) Tall evergreen but often wind stunted, green to bluish spiny scale-like leaves, bluish fruit, bark peels and has orange-brown cast.


4-Pinus rigida (Pitch Pine) Tall, open growing habit, long needles, small persistent cones strongly attached to stem.


5-Parthenocissus quinefolia (Virginia Creeper) Woody vine, five parted leaf, steel blue berries, rambles over bare ground and up trees.


6-Rhus glabra (Smooth Sumac) Multi-stemmed shrub or small tree, compound leaf with persistent tissue at rib, conspicuous fruit is formed at branch ends.


7-Rubus cunefolius,R. flagellaris,R. strigenas (Dewberry, Blackberry, Rasberry) Thorny shrubs, forms thickets, white compound flowers that form masses of berries valuable to wildlife.

Dune Plants Homeindex.htmlshapeimage_3_link_0
Dune Plant Survival & Supremacyplantsurvival.htmlshapeimage_4_link_0
Perennials & Grasses - Woody Plantsshapeimage_5_link_0
Carex pensylvanicaCarexpensylvanica.htmlshapeimage_6_link_0
Beach PlumBeachPlum.htmlshapeimage_7_link_0
Comptonia peregrina (Sweet Fern)SweetFern.htmlshapeimage_8_link_0
Hudsonia-Arcostaphylos AssociationHudsonia.htmlshapeimage_9_link_0
Winter SeasonWinterSeason.htmlshapeimage_11_link_0