How to Grow Armeria maritima Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Thrift

Armeria maritime, also known as sea thrift, is a perennial plant in the plumgago, leadwort, and sea lavender family (Plumbaginaceae).

It grows in low clumps with long green stems that will eventually bloom into flowers. The plant is often found growing in salty coastal areas, and has a high tolerance for drought.


Armeria maritima photograph by AnnaKika.

The plant grows 6 to 12 inches tall (15 to 30 cm) and blooms in mid-spring with purple and pink flowers.

Armeria maritime Growing Guide

Armeria maritime grows best in full sunlight and in a very well-drained soil.

The plant is salt and drought tolerant, but if the soil is kept too moist the plant will die. Because they are so easy to overwater, they have a reputation of being a short-lived plant. In reality, as long as you keep the plant dry, it will continue to bloom and live for several years without requiring much care.

This Armeria species thrives in rock gardens, where water can naturally fall away.

They can easily be grown from seeds, although it usually takes the plant a year before it will bloom and display the pretty pink and purple petals it is known for. As it is a perennial, it will return each year, needing little maintenance from the owner.

The plant is also virtually pest disease-free, making it the perfect plant to use for edging, coastal gardens, or borders.

If growing from seed, then it should be sowed in either late spring or early fall. It will need to over winter before you see it start to sprout in the spring. It can also be planted from a cutting during the summer months.

Armeria maritima Growing and Care Guide

  • Scientific Name: Armeria maritima
  • Common Name: Thrift
  • Growing Zone: USA: 3 to 9
  • Life Cycle / Plant Type: Perennial

Plant Details

  • Plant Height (Inches): 3 to 9
  • Plant Spread (Inches): 9 to 12
  • Time of Bloom: Late spring through mid-summer
  • Flower Details: Pink, Purple, Red, White
  • Leaf Foliage: Green
  • Fruit:
  • Growth Form: Upright / erect

Ideal Growing Conditions

  • Best Light Conditions: Full sunlight
  • Rate of Growth: Average pace
  • Suitable Soil Types: Acidic, Loamy, Neutral, Sandy, Well drained
  • Soil Moisture: Dry

Caring Conditions

  • Care:
  • Level of Maintenance: Medium
  • Propagation: Seed, division or basal cuttings
  • How to Prune: Not usually required
  • Pests: Usually pest free
  • Diseases: Usually pest free, blight

Further Information

  • Can Attract:
  • Tolerant of: Drought, Dry Soil, Shallow-Rocky Soil
  • Best Garden Use: Alpine garden, Border, Container, En masse , Rock garden, Seashore, Specimen
  • Family: Plumbaginaceae.
  • Closely Related Species: Leadwort.

  • Miscellaneous: North American native, Suitable for cut flowers
  • Genus Detail: Armeria
  • Further Reading and References: Here and Here

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Armeria maritime. You may also enjoy the following growing guides:

How to grow Plumgbago and Leadwort.