Succulent Iceplant

(Mesembryanthemum crystallinum) (Also known as Hottentot Fig) Annual or biennial, to 10 inches-Prolific production of daisy-like white to pink flowers in summer. A bed of Iceplant is oddly reminiscent of an undersea stand of sea anemones! The glistening, succulent leaves are tinged with bronze, making a delicious, slightly tart spinach substitute. At one time the leaves were used to treat scurvy on long voyages, which explains its occurrence worldwide, seeds being present in soil dropped by ships in ballast dumps. Has naturalized along the California coast where it is something of a trademark, even though it’s native to southern and western Africa.


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