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Sea Rocket - Cakile maritima

Foraging and identification of Sea Rocket (Cakile maritima)

Edible plant - novice Season - Summer Common names Sea Rocket, European Sea Rocket

Scientific name meaning: Cakile is from the Arabic word for sea rocket: Kakile. Maritima is is from the Latin Maritimus, meaning of or from the sea

Sea Rocket (Cakile maritima) Habitat


Found on sandy beaches all around the UK

Sea Rocket (Cakile maritima) plant structure

Overall structure

A low growing and sprawling plant

Sea Rocket (Cakile maritima) Leaves


The green fleshy leaves are pinnately lobed

Sea Rocket (Cakile maritima) Stems


Smooth, hairless and green



The flowers appears in racemes, have four petals and are lilac to pale lilac in colour

Sea Rocket (Cakile maritima) Sea Pods


The seed pods start off green and become brown and corky as they age. The shape of the pods resembles a bishop's mitre


Possible lookalikes

Could be confused with Ragwort, which is poisonous, but Ragwort has yellow flowers. In addition, the leaves are more ragged than pinnately lobed


Use as a food All aerial parts of the plant can be eaten raw or cooked, but can be quite bitter. The roots can be dried and made into a flour.

Hazards When collecting from shorelines, be aware of any pollution such as sewage outlets. Also, most of the UK coastline is designated SSSI, so ensure you are allowed or have permission to forage

Use in herbal medicine None known. If you known of any, please let us know. If you are suffering from any ailment or need medical advice, please see your General Practitioner Other uses None known Importance to other species None known, please let us know if you know of any

Always stay safe when foraging. You need to be 100% sure of your identification, 100% sure that your foraged item is edible, and 100% sure that you are not allergic to it (it is good practice to always try a small amount of any new food you are consuming). If in doubt, leave it out!


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