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Herbaceous Perennial

Crambe maritima
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

sea kale

C. maritima is a robust herbaceous perennial to 75cm, forming a clump of large, lobed, wavy-edged blue-green leaves, with dense racemes of small white flowers in early summer

Other common names
sea cabbage
sea colewort
see moreseakale

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Size
Ultimate height
0.5–1 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Blue Green
Summer White Blue Green
Autumn Blue Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

West–facing or South–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H7
Botanical details
Family
Brassicaceae
Native to the UK
Yes
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Clump forming
Genus

Crambe are robust annuals and perennials with large, simple or divided leaves and racemes or large panicles of small, fragrant white flowers

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Europe, N Africa, SW Asia

How to grow

Cultivation

Ideally grow in a deep, fertile, well-drained soil in full sun although it will tolerate poor soil and partial shade. Provide shelter from strong winds

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown in pots in a cold frame in spring or autumn or propagate by division in early spring or take root cuttings in winter

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Coastal
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Cut flowers
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

Cut down to ground level in autumn

Pests

Slugs and caterpillars may be a problem

Diseases

May be subject to club root

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