by Stephen Mifsud
   2 Oct 2023      ()
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Lobularia maritima   (Sweet Alyssum)

Lobularia maritima  (BRASSICACEAE.) 
Images for this profile are taken from the Maltese Islands after year 2000.

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General Information Species Images
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Detailed species profile
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Profile Date Mar-2003 (taxon update: Mar-2003)
Citation for this page Mifsud, S. (2022). Lobularia maritima - datasheet created on Mar-2003. Retrieved from on 02-Oct-2023

Nomenclature and Basic Information

Species name :

Lobularia maritima(L.) Desv.
Published in Jour. Bot. Appl. 3: 162 (1815)

Synonyms :
(basionym or principal syn.)

Alyssum maritimum (L.) Lam.
Full list of synonyms : [Euro+Med] [PlantList] [IPNI] [POWO] [Catalogue of Life] []

Plant Family :

Brassicaceae Juss. (=Cruciferae) (The Mustard or Cress Family)
47 species from the Brassicaceae family are recorded from the Maltese Islands.

English name(s) :

Sweet Alyssum, Sweet Alison

Maltese name(s) :


Status for Malta :

Indigenous. Present on the Maltese islands before man

Frequency :

Very Common     Common    Frequent    Scarce     Rare    Very rare    Extinct

Growth form :

Raunkiaer lifeform [info]: CHAMEOPHYTE ( dwarf or small woody shrubs )
Germination [info]: Dicotyledon

Legal Protection :

Not legally protected till the last update of this website (2/Mar/2022)

Red List (1989) :

Not listed in the Red Data Book of the Maltese Islands

Flowering Time :

October – June

Colour of Flowers:



Not particularly toxic

Name Derivation :

Lobularia: a small pod, with reference to the seedpod which is about 1-2mm across. (Latin origin )
maritima: Maritime; related to the coast or the seashore. (Latin origin )

Planting in rural areas :

Can be planted in rural areas according to ERA Guidelines

Description, Habitat and Distribution
Habitat in Europe: Dry, open habitats
Preferred habitat in Malta: Rocky places, Garigue, Steppes, and valley tops. Commonly found along waysides.
Botanical Description: Greyish-white, more or less pubescent perennial (5-)10-40 cm, branched at the base. Leaves linear-lanceolate, acute, rarely obtuse. Petals 2.5-4 mm. Silicula 2-4 mm, obovate or suborbicular; valves convex, pubescent or glabrescent. Seeds 1 in each loculus.
Chromosome number: 2n=24
Distributional range: S. Europe widely cultivated for ornament elsewhere, and often naturalized or casual

Distributional map in Europe
and the Mediterranean region (2018):
Occurrences in Europe.
(from Flora Europaea pre year 1993):
Albania, the Balaeric Islands, Corse, Crete, France (incl. Monaco and Channel Islands but excluding Corse), Spain (incl. Andorra but excl. the Balaerics), Italy (excl. Sicily and Sardignia), Portugal, Sardinia, Sicily and/or Malta, †Au Belgium, Britain (excl. Northern Ireland and Channel islands), Czeck Republic and Slovakia, Denmark, Greece, the Netherlands, Hungary, ex-Jugoslavia, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia and former USSR
Occurrences in Europe and the Mediterranean region.
(from Euro+Med Checklist, 2019)
  Country codes  
? AE Ag Al Ar Bl(I M N) dCa(C P T) Co Cr Ct Eg Ga(F) Hs(S) -IJ It Lu Ma Mk Sa Si(M S) Sn Tn [Al cAu Az(C F G J L M P S T) cBe Be(B) cBr Cs Ct cDa Es Fe Ge cGr Hb(E) He cHo Hu cJu La Lt Md(M) cNo cPo cRm Sl Sr Su Uk cUk(K)]

Links & Further literature (0 papers)

Google Web

Google Images

Google Scholar

Research Gate




Med Checklist

Cat. of Life



World Flora Online

Plants of the World Online

Vienna Virt. Herb.

RBGE Herbarium

KEW Herbarium




Kindly Email if there are papers and publications about local studies or information about this species to be included in the list above.

Species Images (41 images)
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-0.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-1.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-2.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-3.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-4.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-5.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-6.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-7.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-8.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-9.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-10.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-11.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-12.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-13.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-14.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-15.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-16.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-17.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-18.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-19.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-20.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-21.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-22.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-23.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-24.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-25.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-26.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-27.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-28.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-29.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-30.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-31.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-32.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-33.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-34.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-35.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-36.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-37.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-38.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-39.
   Lobularia maritima   -   Image Code: LBLMT-40.

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Section A:  Additional Information about this plant species
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Reference of published material:
Section B:   Where have you seen this plant on the Maltese Islands?
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Try to be as concise as possible. Examples: Dingli Cliffs (near chapel), Wied Incita (Zebbug side), Triq il-Kbira (Qormi), Barriera ta' Ghajn Abdul (Xlendi), Fields East of Salib tal-gholja (Siggiewi). GPS co-ordinates are also welcomed!
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