Hudsonia tomentosa
beach heather

Hudsonia tomentosa
Hudsonia tomentosa
photo courtesy Renee Brecht
Britton & Brown
Botanical name: Hudsonia tomentosa
Common name: beach heather
Group: dicot
Family: Cistaceae
Growth type: sub-shrub
Duration: perennial
Origin: native
Plant height: to 6"
Foliage: alternate, evergreen, scale-like leaves
Flower: yellow, 1/4" across, 5 petals
Flowering time: bloom late May to June; fruit late June to August
Habitat: dry sand of dunes
Range in New Jersey: through the coast strip from Middlesex county southward, including Delaware baysore; intrusive into the eastern edge of the Pine barrens (Hough, 183)
Heritage ranking, if any: n/a
Misc. Witmer Stone, 1910, says " This low, white, woolly shrub, seldom over six inches in height, forms patches of considerable extent over the wind-swept sand dunes of the coast, which it so closely resembles in color as to be inconspicuous, except in late spring when its branches are covered with little starry yellow blossoms"(561).

H. tomentosa resembles H. ericoides; however, H. tomentosa twigs are covered with tiny white hairs on the leaves, giving it a bluer-gray color than the green of H. ericoides. After flower, H. ericoides  will also develop longer needle-like leaves than will H. tomentosa.