Atriplex halimus

Atriplex halimus (known also by its common names: Mediterranean saltbush , Sea orache , Shrubby orache , Silvery orache ) is a species of fodder shrub in the Amaranthaceaefamily, which is native to Europe and Northern Africa , including the Sahara in Morocco .

This plant is cultivated Often as drilling Because tolerating severe terms of drought , and it can grow up in very alkaline and saline soils . In addition, it is useful for degraded and marginal areas because it will contribute to the improvement of phytomass in this case.

It is a dietary staple for the Sand Rat ( Psammomys obesus ).

Hypoglycemic properties

Extracts from the leaves have shown to have significant hypoglycemic effects. [1]

Use in antiquity

According to Jewish tradition, the leaves of Atriplex halimus (orache), known in Mishnaic Hebrew as le’ūnīn ( Hebrew : לעונין ), [2] and in biblical Hebrew (see: Job 30: 4 ) as maluaḥ ( Hebrew : מלוח ) , [3] is said to be gathered by the poor people who returned from exile (in circa 352 BCE) to build the Second Temple . [4] Maimonides , In His commentary on Mishnah Kilaim 1: 3, as aussi Ishtori Haparchiin his seminal work, Kaftor u’ferach , [5] both mention the le’ūnīn by its Arabic name, al-qaṭaf , a plant so-named to this very day. In the Mishnah (ibid.) We are Told que la Laws Prohibiting the growing of various kinds in the garden Sami furrow do not apply to beets and to orache (Atriplex spp.) That are grown together, ALTHOUGH dissimilar. [6]


  1. Jump up^ Hypoglycaemic effect of the salt bush Atriplex halimus, a feeding source of Psammomys obesus
  2. Jump up^ Mishnah, with Maimonides’ Commentary,Kilaim1: 3Tractate, Mossad Harav Kook edition, vol. 1, Jerusalem 1963.
  3. Jump up^ Mistranslated as “mallows” in theKing James Bibleand haveNesseln(nettles) in theLuther Bible
  4. Jump up^ Babylonian Talmud,Kiddushin66a, RASHI ibid., Sv מלוחים.
  5. Jump up^ Kaftor u’ferach(Avraham Yosef Havatzelet), vol. 3, Jerusalem 1999, p. 262.
  6. Jump up^ The Mishnah(Herbert Danby),Kilaim1: 3, Oxford University Press 1977, p. 28, sv “beet and orach.”