- Author: Jackie Woods
- Editor: Noni Todd
By Jackie Woods UCCE Master Gardener
Sea Lavender, Seafoam Statice
Planting Areas:Courtyards, rock gardens, flower beds; grows well in seaside conditions.
Size: flower stalks to 2-3 feet; foliage up to 18 inches tall.
Bloom season: blooms nearly year-round; heaviest in the summer.
Exposure: prefers full sun, does not tolerate frost conditions.
Pruning needs: minimum attention required, remove spent flowers stalks.
Water needs: drought-tolerant once established, supplement water in low rain years.
Narrative: Sea Lavender, which has nothing at all to do with lavender, is native to the Canary Islands. Once classified by the genus Status, the species is now more commonly called Limonium perezii (not to be confused with its relative, the more commonly grown annual statice.) Limonium is an herbaceous evergreen perennial subshrub with dense, rounded dark green leathery leaves. The flowers are strikingly beautiful with intense purple calyces and white corollas on stiff, long stems. Butterflies and hummingbirds are attracted to the showy flowers. The fruit of the Limonium is a tiny capsule containing a single seed, partly enclosed by the calyx. The flower petals are dry and papery at peak bloom. This plant is also known as an ‘everlasting' which means that the flower retains its shape and color when dried, making it a popular favorite to use in dried flower arrangements. Limonium tolerates salty conditions and well-drained soil but it really thrives in sandy soils. It can develop root rot in poorly drained, heavy wet soils. This plant has large taproots which makes it difficult dig up. If using it as a container plant, choose a deep bodied container to accommodate its taproot. Limonium is deer resistant but keep an eye out for brown snails which can be a nuisance. In the fall and winter months, Limonium foliage turns brown, which is normal. Removing the spent leaves allows for new growth in the spring. Perennial plants that complement Limonium include yarrow, daylily, Echeveria and kangaroo paw.