Sea plant names describe plants that live and thrive in the saltwater of the ocean. From seagrasses to algae, the sea plant community is diverse and includes many varieties. Plants range from microscopic specimens to large spreading plants. Some plants are found near the coastline, while others inhabit deeper oceanic waters.
Johnson's seagrass (Halophila johnsonii) is a sea plant that’s easily distinguishable from other seagrasses due to its asexual reproduction and its display of a particular leaf type. This seagrass has smooth leaves that are shaped like a spatula. They group in sets of two along creeping plant stems, according to the NOAA Fisheries Office of Protected Resources. Generally found near the coast of Florida, Johnson's seagrass is found in lagoons. It’s a food source for manatees and green sea turtles.
Mangroves inhabit coastal ocean waters between the shore and mean sea level, according to the University of Florida IFAS Extension. There are 40 different species of mangrove in the Indio-Pacific group and eight species in region that includes the Americas, West Africa and the Caribbean. These sea plants grow as tropical trees or shrubs with roots that filter salt from salt water. Since mangroves are partially in water and partially out, they provide a habitat for terrestrial animals as well as marine life.
Caulerpa taxifola is green algae known for its spreading habit that lives in reef flats and tide pools, according to the University of Hawaii Botany Department. In comes in dark green to light green hues. Its feathery branches reach a height of up to 4 inches. Indigenous to Hawaii, green algae also inhabits many other areas of the world like Australia and the Caribbean. After unintentional release in the Mediterranean and California, this variety of green algae became considered an invasive sea plant. However, it does not exhibit invasive tendencies in its native Hawaii.
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