Cakile sp. (Sea rocket)
Copyright © 2008
Mary Jo Adams
Two species of sea rocket are found on Island County beaches. Belonging to the mustard family, neither species is native to the West Coast of the United States.
European sea rocket (Cakile maritima) (pictured above) has thick fleshy leaves that are deeply lobed in a pinnate pattern. The pod (fruit) is divided into upper and lower sections by an inverted V-shaped suture. The white to pale purple flower petals are 8-10 mm. in length.
American sea rocket (Cakile edentula) also has thick fleshy leaves but the margins are wavy rather than lobed. The pod is bisected by a simple constriction. With a petal length of 6-8 mm. the flowers are somewhat smaller than those of the other species.
Further information can be found at http://www.beachwatchers.wsu.edu/island/essays/rocket.htm
page was created by Mary Jo Adams on 11/7/08.