Baccharis halimifolia

Photo Courtesy of K. Hubeny

Common Name(s) Groundsel Tree/Sea-myrtle, Waterbush
Scientific Name Baccharis halimifolia
Family Asteraceae
Location/Vegetative Zone Salt Marsh
Flowering Period September-Early December
Identifying Characteristics Up to 10 feet tall with white bristles


• Grows up to or more than 10 feet tall
• Tall shrub with thin, alternate leaves
• During August/September, yellow flowerheads appear
• From September until early winter, white bristles will appear on the seeds
• Flowers produce a nectar that attracts Monarch butterflies
• Seeds are toxic to humans
• Leaves are toxic to livestock
• High salt tolerance
• Grows from Massachusetts to Florida, US Gulf Coast, Northern Mexico
• Leaves usually a dullish grey-green color
• The fruits, produced by female plants, are small achenes with 10 pale ribs
• Pollen is an allergen
• Lifespan is upwards of 50 years


• Leaves are known to treat fever, congestion, and other pneumonia-type symptons in humans when boiled into a green brew and served with honey, lemon, sugar, mint, and/or whiskey.


• Useful around retention ponds and basins as a barrier plant

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