Baccharis halimifolia Sea-Myrtle, Groundsel-Bush

Baccharis halimifolia Sea-Myrtle, Groundsel-Bush Baccharis halimifolia, usually found in wetlands, is unusually salt-tolerant, and often found along salty or brackish shores of marshes and estuaries, and the inland shores of coastal barrier islands. In Florida, it is also found along ditches, in old fields, and in other disturbed areas.[11] Other habitats in the northeastern United States include freshwater tidal marshes and open woods and thickets along the seacoast.[10] The…

Description

Baccharis halimifolia Sea-Myrtle, Groundsel-Bush

Baccharis halimifolia, usually found in wetlands, is unusually salt-tolerant, and often found along salty or brackish shores of marshes and estuaries, and the inland shores of coastal barrier islands. In Florida, it is also found along ditches, in old fields, and in other disturbed areas.[11] Other habitats in the northeastern United States include freshwater tidal marshes and open woods and thickets along the seacoast.[10]

The flowers produce abundant nectar that attracts various butterflies, including the monarch (Danaus plexippus).[11] These dense shrubs also provide wildlife food and cover.[11]

Invasiveness

The species has become naturalized in Europe[11] and in New Zealand and considered invasive.[11]

The species features since 2016 on the list of Invasive Alien Species of Union Concern.[13] This means that import of the species and trade in the species is forbidden in the whole of the European Union.[14]

In AustraliaB. halimifolia is an invasive species along the coast of southern Queensland and New South Wales.[5] As biological control the rust fungus Puccinia evadens[15] is used. Furthermore, the lepidoptera Hellinsia balanotes (Meyrick, 1908), Aristotelia ivae Busck, 1900, Lorita baccharivora Pogue, 1988 and Prochoerodes truxaliata (Guenée, 1858) were released for its biological control.

In the northeastern United States, the species has become common well inland of the shrub’s natural range along various major highways where road salt is heavily used,[7] sometimes forming conspicuous displays when flowering in the fall, as along I-95 in Howard CountyMaryland.

The seeds of Baccharis halimifolia are toxic to humans