Interesting facts about Old Man Saltbush

Interesting facts about Old Man Saltbush

Old Man Saltbush (Atriplex nummularia) is a versatile plant native to Australia and is known for its remarkable adaptability and usefulness. Here are some interesting facts about Old Man Saltbush:

  1. Adaptation to arid environments: Old Man Saltbush is highly adapted to survive in arid and saline (salty) conditions. It has the ability to tolerate high levels of salt in the soil and can grow in areas where other plants struggle to survive.

  2. Lifespan: Old Man Saltbush is a long-lived plant. It can live for several decades, with some individuals surviving for up to 50 years or more.

  3. Size and appearance: It is a shrub that can grow up to 2 meters (6.5 feet) in height. The leaves of Old Man Saltbush are small, oval-shaped, and covered with fine silvery-gray hairs, giving the plant a distinctive appearance.

  4. Nutritional value: Old Man Saltbush has excellent nutritional value, particularly for livestock. It is rich in protein, minerals (such as calcium, iron, and magnesium), and vitamins (such as vitamin A and vitamin E). It is often used as a forage crop for grazing animals, providing them with valuable nutrition in arid regions.

  5. Soil improvement: This plant has the ability to improve soil conditions. It can help reduce soil erosion, increase soil organic matter, and enhance soil fertility due to its deep root system and ability to fix nitrogen from the air.

  6. Culinary uses: Old Man Saltbush has gained popularity in recent years as a culinary ingredient. The leaves can be used in cooking as a seasoning, added to salads, or used as a flavoring for meat dishes. The salty taste of the leaves gives a unique twist to various recipes.

  7. Medicinal uses: Traditionally, Old Man Saltbush has been used by Indigenous Australians for its medicinal properties. It has been used to treat various ailments, such as coughs, colds, and skin infections.

  8. Environmental benefits: Old Man Saltbush plays a crucial role in ecological restoration and land rehabilitation projects. Its ability to survive in harsh conditions makes it an excellent plant for stabilizing soil, preventing desertification, and restoring degraded areas.

  9. Commercial cultivation: Due to its multiple uses and benefits, Old Man Saltbush is now commercially cultivated in many countries, including Australia, for livestock feed, culinary purposes, and land rehabilitation projects.

  10. Resilience to climate change: The adaptability and resilience of Old Man Saltbush make it a valuable plant in the face of climate change. It can withstand droughts, salinity, and extreme temperatures, making it an important species for sustainable agriculture and land management practices.

Old Man Saltbush Roasted Potatoes

Old Man Saltbush has a unique flavour profile, somewhat salty and tangy, which makes it a versatile ingredient in various dishes. Here's a simple twist on the classic Roast Potato incorporating Old Man Saltbush.



  1. Preheat your oven to 200°C (400°F).

  2. Wash the potatoes thoroughly and cut them into small cubes or bite-sized pieces. Leave the skin on for added texture and nutrients.

  3. In a mixing bowl, combine the potatoes, dried Old Man Saltbush leaves, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toss everything together, ensuring the potatoes are evenly coated with the oil and seasonings.

  4. Transfer the potatoes onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or lightly greased. Spread them out in a single layer to ensure even cooking.

  5. Place the baking sheet in the preheated oven and roast the potatoes for about 30-35 minutes or until they are golden brown and crispy. Be sure to flip the potatoes halfway through the cooking time for even browning.

  6. Once the potatoes are cooked to your desired crispness, remove them from the oven and let them cool for a few minutes before serving.

Old Man Saltbush adds a unique and delicious flavor to the roasted potatoes, reminiscent of a subtle saltiness with earthy undertones. These potatoes make a fantastic side dish and can accompany various meals, such as grilled meats, roasted vegetables, or enjoyed on their own as a snack.

Posted By Herb Wholesalers

Updated : 1st June 2023 | Words : 669 | Views : 233

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