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Common Name: Barilla Plant
Salsola soda is an annual plant that can grow up to 0.60 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food and source of materials.
Europe - Mediterranean to W. Asia.
Maritime sands and salty soils near sea level in the Mediterranean and in Turkey[
We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. Plants are sometimes cultivated for the potash obtained from their stems[
]. The following notes are based on the general needs of the genus.
Requires a very sunny position in a light or medium well-drained soil, it tolerates salty soils, occasional inundation by salt water and maritime exposure. Succeeds in poor soils and grows more vigorously on alkaline soils[
Young leaves and stems - cooked and used as a vegetable[
]. A crunchy tender texture[
The ashes of the burnt plant are used for making glass and soap[
]. At one time large quantities of the ashes were imported into Britain for this purpose, but nowadays a chemical process using salt is employed[
Seed - sow spring in situ. The seed has a short viability and should be stored cool over the winter[