This curious plant grows on sandy seashores in England, but it is not common in Scotland, and it will not grow far North.
The flowers grow in clover-shaped heads at the ends of very stiff stems. These flowers are very small, of a whitish-blue colour, and they are not at all attractive. If you examine one closely you find that the petals stand straight up, and each petal has a pointed beak which bends forward towards the centre of the flower. The stamens also curve inwards.
Outside this cluster of flowers there is a crowded mass of small green leaves, and each leaf ends in three short points. These leaves are a yellow-green colour, but all the rest of the flower is a beautiful grey-blue.
The stems of the Sea Holly are stiff, with ridges running up them, and the leaves have no stalks of their own, but grow in a circle of three or five, tightly clasping the main stem. These leaves are very smooth and thick. They are grey-blue in colour, with yellow-green patches between the veins, and they have very hard edges which are waved all round. Each of these waves ends in a sharp point.
The Sea Holly is quite as prickly as the Christmas Holly, and as it grows low down among the sands, bare-footed children must be careful not to stand on it.
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