Roxanna Dewitt

Roxanna Dewitt

Modified & Updated: 11 Oct 2023


Sea Holly, also known as Eryngium, is a captivating and unique plant that has captured the hearts of gardeners and flower enthusiasts around the world. With its spiky blue-gray foliage and vibrant blooms, Sea Holly stands out among other plants with its extraordinary beauty. Apart from its stunning appearance, Sea Holly also has a rich history and interesting characteristics that make it a fascinating subject of study. In this article, we will explore 14 extraordinary facts about Sea Holly, ranging from its medicinal uses to its symbolic meanings. So, get ready to delve into the intriguing world of Sea Holly and discover why it is truly an exceptional plant.

Table of Contents

Sea Holly: The Prickly Beauty

Sea Holly, scientifically known as Eryngium, is a stunning perennial plant that belongs to the Apiaceae family. With its distinctive spiky leaves and vibrant blue flower heads, Sea Holly adds a touch of uniqueness to any garden.

A Coastal Delight

As the name suggests, Sea Holly is commonly found along coastal areas, specifically in dune systems and salt marshes. It is well-adapted to withstand the harsh conditions of these environments, including salt spray and sandy soils.

Hello, Sea Holly – Goodbye, Drought

One of the remarkable qualities of Sea Holly is its ability to thrive in drought-like conditions. Its deep-reaching taproot enables it to access water from deep within the soil, making it a resilient plant for water-scarce regions.

Guardians of Butterflies

The vibrant blue flower heads of Sea Holly serve as a delightful attraction for butterflies and other pollinators. Planting Sea Holly in your garden can create a haven for these beautiful creatures, enhancing biodiversity in the surrounding area.

Medicinal Uses for Sea Holly

Sea Holly has been used in traditional medicine for centuries. It is believed to possess diuretic, anti-inflammatory, and digestive properties. The roots and leaves are often brewed into teas or tinctures to alleviate various ailments.

A Magnet for Bees

Bees are also drawn to the nectar-rich Sea Holly flowers. By planting Sea Holly, you can support bee populations and contribute to the vital role they play in pollination and ecosystem balance.

A Symbol of Strength and Protection

Sea Holly has long been associated with protective qualities and was historically used to ward off evil spirits. Its sharp spiky leaves were believed to act as a powerful shield, bringing strength and safeguarding against negative energies.

Eye-Catching Arrangements

The uniquely-shaped flower heads of Sea Holly make it a popular choice for floral arrangements. Whether used fresh or dried, Sea Holly adds a striking touch to bouquets and floral displays, creating an intriguing texture and visual appeal.

A Culinary Delight

Believe it or not, Sea Holly is also edible! The young leaves and shoots can be used in salads, adding a slightly tangy and spicy flavor. Its delightful blue flowers can be candied or used to garnish desserts, giving them a touch of elegance.

Diverse Species

The Eryngium genus consists of over 250 different species of Sea Holly, each with its own unique characteristics. From the vibrant blue hues to the silver-gray foliage, there is a Sea Holly variety to suit every taste and garden style.

Hardy Perennial

Sea Holly is a hardy perennial that can survive in a range of climates. It is tolerant of both heat and cold, making it a versatile choice for gardeners in various regions.

Symbolic Meanings

Sea Holly holds symbolic meanings across different cultures. It is often associated with protection, good luck, and perseverance. In some traditions, it is considered a symbol of love and fidelity.

Intriguing Folklore

According to folklore, Sea Holly was believed to have magical properties. It was thought to have the ability to attract luck and repel negative forces. The plant was often hung in doorways or carried as a protective talisman.

Sustainable Gardening

Sea Holly is an excellent choice for sustainable gardening. It requires minimal maintenance, is resistant to pests and diseases, and provides food and shelter for beneficial insects. Incorporating Sea Holly into your garden can contribute to a more eco-friendly and resilient ecosystem.

Now that you’ve learned about these 14 extraordinary facts about Sea Holly, you can appreciate the beauty and significance of this remarkable plant. Whether you’re looking to enhance your garden’s biodiversity, create striking floral arrangements, or simply enjoy the unique qualities of Sea Holly, this fascinating plant is sure to captivate and inspire.


Sea Holly, also known as Eryngium, is a remarkable plant with many extraordinary characteristics. From its unique appearance to its usefulness in various industries, sea holly has captivated people around the world. Its striking blue, spiky flowers and thistle-like leaves make it a popular choice for gardens and floral arrangements. Additionally, sea holly has medicinal properties and is used in traditional herbal remedies. It also plays a vital role in supporting pollinators, attracting bees and butterflies with its nectar-rich blooms. Whether you’re a gardener, a nature enthusiast, or simply intrigued by the wonders of the plant world, sea holly is a fascinating subject to explore.


Q: How tall do sea holly plants grow?

A: Sea holly plants can range in height from 1 to 3 feet, depending on the variety and growing conditions.

Q: Does sea holly require a lot of sunlight?

A: Sea holly thrives in full sun to partial shade. It prefers at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day for optimal growth.

Q: Can sea holly be grown in containers?

A: Yes, sea holly can be grown in containers. Just make sure the container is large enough to accommodate the plant’s root system and provide proper drainage.

Q: Is sea holly a drought-tolerant plant?

A: Yes, sea holly is known for its ability to tolerate dry conditions. Once established, it requires minimal watering and can survive in areas with low rainfall.

Q: Are sea holly flowers long-lasting?

A: Yes, sea holly flowers are long-lasting. They can retain their color and form for several weeks, making them ideal for floral arrangements and dried flower crafts.

Q: Can sea holly be grown from seeds?

A: Yes, sea holly can be grown from seeds. However, it may take a longer time for the plants to establish and bloom compared to those propagated from cuttings or divisions.

Q: Is sea holly deer-resistant?

A: Yes, sea holly is often considered deer-resistant due to its tough, spiky foliage. However, hungry deer may still browse on the plant if there are no other food sources available.

Q: Can sea holly be used in flower arrangements?

A: Yes, sea holly is frequently used in both fresh and dried flower arrangements. Its sturdy stems and unique texture add interest and depth to floral designs.

Q: Does sea holly have any medicinal uses?

A: Yes, sea holly has been used in traditional medicine to treat various ailments such as inflammation, digestive issues, and respiratory problems. However, it’s essential to consult a healthcare professional before using it for medicinal purposes.

Q: How do I care for sea holly plants?

A: Sea holly plants are relatively low-maintenance. They prefer well-drained soil, regular watering during the growing season, and occasional fertilization. Pruning spent blooms can encourage further flowering.

Q: What pollinators are attracted to sea holly?

A: Sea holly is a magnet for bees and butterflies. Its nectar-rich flowers provide a valuable food source for these beneficial insects.