Salt pruning is the process by which saline mists generated by seawater are driven ashore by winds and thus over time alter the shape of trees or shrubs. The process degrades foliage and branches on the windward side of the plant that faces the body of saline water, more than it does the foliage on the landward side. The resultant growth form is asymmetrical, appearing "swept back" away from the ocean.
There are numerous examples worldwide of this phenomenon. In the eastern United States on Long Island occurrences of salt-pruned Quercus stellata are observable in Flax Marsh. In San Diego County, California, a colony of Pinus torreyana has been salt-pruned by spray from the Pacific Ocean.
- Brooks, Robbyn (August 22, 2005). "Salt, storms stimulate trees and vegetation". Northwest Florida Daily News. Retrieved August 2, 2012.
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