Glasswort sp.

Glasswort sp.

Glasswort sp. - Arthrocnemum glaucum

This plant is often the dominant species of Mediterranean salicornia (salt-wort) fields, medium to low plant formations of various thickness, typical of brackish water wetlands (normally situated near the coast and often flooded by sea water).

Glasswort is a perennial belonging to the Chenopodiacee (Goosefoot) family, one that includes many species adapted to living on substrates with a high saline content (some species of the family are widely cultivated, for example Swiss Chard, Beetroot etc.).

The leaves are small and scaly, ensheathing the stem. A very branched plant, it is first grey-green in colour turning green-yellow or reddish; the branches are fleshy, jointed, and look as though they are leafless.

The flowers are inconspicuous and the seeds are black and warty.

In Tuscany, Glasswort is common in the Orbetello Lagoon, in the wet coastal areas of the Maremma Park and further north in the Lame di Fuori of the San Rossore Natural Park.