©Amy Lewis


Scientific name: Hippophae rhamnoides
Sea-buckthorn is a spiny, thicket-forming shrub of sand dunes on the east coast of England, but has also been planted elsewhere. It is most obvious in autumn when it is full of bright orange berries.

Species information


Height: 1-8m

Conservation status


When to see

January to December


Sea-buckthorn is a very spiny shrub, native to sand dunes along the east coast of England, but planted in other areas to help stabilise dune systems. It forms dense thickets with thorny twigs and, although it has small green flowers, is most noticeable in the autumn when it displays an abundance of bright orange berries.

How to identify

Sea-buckthorn is a large, deciduous shrub that has long, narrow, greyish leaves and small, green flowers. Its bright orange berries are probably its most distinguishing feature.


Grows wild along the east coast of England and the coast of Northern Ireland; widely planted elsewhere.

Did you know?

The orange berries of sea-buckthorn provide food for wintering thrushes as they arrive from the continent in the autumn. They can also provide food for us, too, as they can be used to create jellies or syrups.