Any plants growing on and around the Cliffs of Moher must be tough and hardy to survive the prevailing winds and thin soils. Starting at the base of the cliff, we can find seaweed on the shore and lichens on the rocks. Further up, mosses and liverworts cling to cracks in the cliff face. About halfway up the cliff, debris falling from above has formed a covering of soil providing habitat for wild flowers and grasses.
Soil types vary along the cliff top but are generally acidic and poorly drained. Around O’Briens Tower, the soil has benefited from better drainage, but elsewhere wet ‘gley’ soils predominate. This unproductive soil is of little agricultural use, with the result that it harbours a wide variety of wild plants.