Irish Wildflowers in Coastal Areas

The Irish coastline offers a wide range of habitats for wildflowers, bare and windswept cliffs, sand dunes and shingle beaches, sheltered estuaries and mud-flats. The one factor common to these widely differing enviroments is the presence of salt, and to survive plants must be able to retain moisture, giving them many similarities to plants found growing in deserts and other very dry places.

Salt-tolerant plants close to the tidal line have very fleshy leaves to cope with frequent immersion in salt water. Wildflowers on cliffs, dunes and coastal grassland must have leaves able to survive the drying effect of salt-laden winds. Below are some wildflowers often found in coastal areas of Ireland. Please hover over images for the Common and Irish name and click image for more photographs, plant details and distribution maps. Coastal lichens can be seen here.

alexanders (lusrán grándubh) arrowgrass,sea (barr an mhilltigh mara) arrowgrass,sea (barr an mhilltigh mara) asparagus,wild (Lus súgach) aster,sea (luibh bhléine) bartsia,yellow (hocas tae buí) bedstraw,ladys (boladh cnis) bindweed,hedge (ialus fáil) bindweed,sea (plúr an phrionsa) broomrape,ivy (múchóg mhór) buttercup,bulbous (tuile thalún) buttercup,small-flowered (fearbán beag) cabbage,wild (cabáiste fiáin) campion,sea (coireán mara) carrot,sea (mealbhacán mara) carrot,wild (mealbhacán) cats-ear (cluas chait) centuary (dréimire mhuire) centuary,lesser (dréimire beag) chamomile,common clover,birds-foot (seamair éin) clover,hares-foot (cos mhaideach) Clover, knotted / soft (Seamair striocach) cornsalad (ceathrú uain) cranesbill,doves-foot (crobh bog) dock,curled ssp littoreus dock,curled ssp uliginosa eyebright,irish (glanrosc gaelach) fumitory,white ramping (caman searraigh bán) glassworts (lus na gloine) glasswort,common glasswort,one-flowered glasswort,purple golden-samphire (ailleann pheadair) harebell (méaracán gorm) hawkbit,lesser (crág phortáin bheag) hemp-agrimony (cnáib uisce) horse-radish (meacan ragaim) knotgrass ssp. knotgrass,ray's (glúineach ghlé) ladys-tresses,autumn (cúilín muire) leek,babingtons (cainneann) little-robin (eireaball rí) little-robin (eireaball rí) Lupin, tree (Lúipín crua) mallow,tree (hocas ard) mayweed,sea (lus bealtaine) mouse-ear,sea (cluas luchóige mhara) nightshade,woody var marinum (fuath gorm) orache,common (eilifleog) orache,frosted (eilifleog phlúrach) orache,spear-leaved (eilifleog leathan) orchid,green-winged (magairlín féitheach) orchid,green-winged (magairlín féitheach) orchid,western marsh (magairlín gaelach) pansy,sand (goirmín duimhche) pea,sea (peasairín trá) pearlwort,sea (mongán mara) plantain,bucks-horn (adharca fia) plantain,sea (slánlus mara) poppy,yellow horned (caillichín na trá) radish,sea (meacan mara) radish,sea (meacan mara) ragwort,common ssp dunensis ragwort,common x ssp dunensis rocket,sea (cearrbhacán mara) rose,burnet (briulán) saltwort,prickly (lus an tsalainn) samphire,rock (craobhraic) sandwort,sea (gaineamhlus mara) scurvygrass,common (biolar trá) scurvygrass,english (carrán muirisce) scurvygrass,danish (carrán creige) seablite,annual (blide mhara) seablite,annual (blide mhara) sea beet (laíon na trá) sea-buckthorn (draighean mara) sea holly (cuileann trá) sea-kale (Praiseach thrá) sea-lavender,lax-flowered (lus liath na mara) sea-lavender,rock (lus liath aille) sea-milkwort (lus an tsailte) sea-purslane (lus an gaill) sea-spurrey,greater (cabróis mhara mhór) sea-spurrey,lesser (cabróis mhara bheag) sea-spurrey,rock (cabróis na gcloch) sheeps-bit (luibh an ghalair cam) silverweed (briosclán) sorrel,sheeps (samhadh caorach) sow-thistle,perennial (bleachtán léana) spurge,portland (spuirse ghainimh) spurge,sea (bainne léana) st.johns-wort,perforate (lus na maighdine muire) stonecrop,biting (grafán na gcloch) stonecrop,english (púiríní seangán) stonecrop,white (grafán bán na gcloch) storksbill,common (creagach) storksbill,musk (creagach muscach) storksbill,sea (creagach mara) thistle,carline (feochadán mín) Thistle, slender (Deagha buí) thrift (rabhán) thyme,wild (tím chreige) tree-mallow (hocas ard) vetch,common (peasair chapaill) vetch,kidney (méara muire) vetch,kidney (méara muire) water-dropwort,parsley (dathabha peirsile) willow,creeping (saileach reatha) wormwood,sea (liath na trá) yellow-wort (gréimire buí) yellow rattle (gliográn)

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