Pickle weed

(Salicornia virginica)
Status: Native
Habitat: Wetland
Description: Pickleweed is a perennial or sub-shrub that is 5 to 17 inches tall. This plant spreads from rooting, horizontal, underground stems. It is commonly found in salt marshes and alkali flats. Pickleweed plants have many branching and jointed stems with fleshy green sections between the joints. Pickleweed is a purple to dark green, low-growing succulent that is extreme­ly salt tolerant. The plant flourishes in both diked managed wet­lands and upper tidal areas.
Growth Requirements: This plant usually is found growing in poorly drained and high saline pond bottoms and uplands that have been flooded for 6 months or less. Pickleweed is usually one of the first pioneers to re-inhabit a high saline pond bottom after soil salts are leached out enough to support plant life. This plant provides very good invertebrate structure and can support many species of wildlife, especially the omnivorous waterfowl species such as widgeon, gadwall, and shovelers. Pickleweed is also a major component in the recovery of the Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse and is critical to its survival.