I noticed this scrawny bloomer shoving its way up through a small patch of Himalayan blackberry and European seagrass in the dunes near the north end of Seaside’s boardwalk. It was the only plant of its kind in sight, and I have not seen anything similar to it elsewhere. As of now, it is unidentified.
When I walked up on it, my first notion was a random cherry tree, but those blossoms are rather large to be a cherry; they’re about the size of a silver dollar. Also, I recall cherry blossoms clustering in greater numbers. Leaves and blossoms burst from nodes on branches in an irregular, alternate pattern. Nodes are unevenly spaced and emmerge in a loose spiral pattern up the branch. Branch diameter, on average, was about an inch or a few centimeters, indicating this plant is at least a few years old.
Leaves have toothed margins, are up to a few inches long, have a prominent center vein that feeds a number of finer subordinate veins. The shape ranges from lanceolate to elliptic, and the color is more lime green than it is fir green. Quite a few leaves expressed their displeasure with the coastal climate with brown, crispy tips.