Crithmum maritimum Linn. Umbelliferae. Samphire. Sea Fennel.
Europe. This is a seaside plant, found on rocky shores from the Crimea to Land's End, England, and extends even to the Caucasus. The whole plant is "of a spicie taste with a certaine saltnesse" on which account it has been long held in great repute as an ingredient in salads. It was declared by Gerarde to be "the pleasantest sauce." Samphire is cultivated in English gardens for its seed pods, which make a warm, aromatic pickle, and for its leaves, which are used in salads, but it is oftener collected from the shores. In Jamaica, as Titford declares, it forms an agreeable and wholesome pickle. In France, it is cultivated for its leaves which, pickled with vinegar, enter into salads and seasonings. The first mention of its culture is by Quintyne, in France, 1690; it is again mentioned by Stevenson, in England, 1765; and its use as a potherb by the poor, as well as a pickle, is noticed by Bryant8 1783. It is noticed in American gardens in 1821.