rush, and is rarely the dominant species except in poorly drained areas or in narrow bands. Saltgrass is
more difficult to establish than the cordgrasses and usually is allowed to volunteer into cordgrass
Pacific Coast Marshes. Vegetation in marshes along the Pacific coast is more diverse than along
the Atlantic coast. Pacific cordgrass is found along the central and southern California coasts.
Pickleweed, sedges, arrowgrass, and tufted hair grass are common along the northern Pacific coast.
Pacific Cordgrass (Spartina foliosa). It is similar to smooth cordgrass, but it takes longer to
establish. It dominates below the mean tide level of intertidal marshes.
Pickleweed (Salicornia spp.). From mean high water to extreme high tide, various species of
pickleweed can be used upslope of Pacific cordgrass. It will spread both by seeds and vegetatively (by
rhizomes and tillers), but because it is shallow-rooted, it is probably not as useful for stabilization as
Pacific cordgrass. Pickleweed may be easily established by seeding or by transplanted peat-pot
seedlings, and in fact, often invades disturbed surfaces during the first growing season.
Sedge (Carex lyngbvei). Sedge marshes are usually found in areas such as river deltas where
silty soils exist. They grow above the mean tide level and are not especially salt tolerant. The plant may
respond to nitrogen and phosphorous under deficient conditions. It appears to be one of the best marsh
plants available in the Pacific Northwest.
Tufted Hair Grass (Deschampsia caespitosa). This plant predominates i high marshes subject to
flooding only by higher-high tides. It is a good sediment accumulator and stabilizer once established. It
is generally easy to transplant and quick to establish.
Arrowgrass (Triglochlin maritima). This plant will frequently invade and colonize disturbed
marshes, trapping sediments and debris and helping to create a substrate for other plants. Planting should
follow the method described for sedges.
Great Lakes Marshes. Marshes of the Great Lakes are generally limited in extent, and confined
primarily to the protected shores of bays and inlets of Lakes Huron and Michigan. Establishing fresh
water marshes may not provide as satisfactory a level of erosion prevention as saltwater marshes. The
landowner interested in establishing fresh water marshes should consider the common reed (Ph.ragmites
communis), rushes (Scirpus spp. ) such as spike rush, bulrush, and great bulrush, and, in some instances,
upland grasses such as reed canarygrass (Phalaris arundinacea).
Beach and Dune Plants
The protection of the upland portions of sandy shorelines can be accomplished through the
creation of barrier dunes and the stabilization of present dunes. Vegetation used to initiate the building
of barrier dunes is specially adapted to the more severe environment of the beach area (Figure 55).
Barrier dune formation can occur naturally, but it is usually slow and in some areas does not happen.
Utilization and proper management of the natural processes can accelerate the development.