Definition of glasswort in US English:



  • A widely distributed salt-marsh plant with fleshy scale-like leaves. The ashes of the burned plant were formerly used in glass-making.

    Genus Salicornia, family Chenopodiaceae: several species

    Also called samphire
    • ‘So I repaired to slightly higher ground away from the bank, found a nice black mangrove to provide some shade and plopped down on a bed of glasswort.’
    • ‘It would have been a great convenience if everyone had agreed long ago to call marsh samphire by its alternative name glasswort (given because it used to be burned to provide alkali for glass-makers).’
    • ‘Salicornes (glasswort in English) are these wild little plants that grow in salt marshes.’
    • ‘Finally, I drove eastwards towards Sheppey, past Funton Creek, where reptilian glasswort plants replenish seed-stocks for hungry wildfowl, to Bedlam's Bottom to enjoy a glowing sunset.’