Wednesday, July 24, 2013


I have one spot in my garden that endures 5 hours of western sun each summer day.
I have tried a number of ground covers in this location, but all have failed.

This year I am trying a little plant called ice plant. 

It seems fortified with extra succulent super powers.

It comes in a variety of lovely colors and foliage types.

It's a Plant Select winner, which means it can grow in our western states, take frosts, endure heat waves, and wait out periods of drought.

I especially like this tag since it contains key words that would stir any gardener's soul.
Words like:
 continuous display, robust, extremely drought tolerant, hardy, carpet of flowers, and spreading. 
These are music to my ears, especially since I am planting the poor things in
the worst spot in my garden. 
(I'm making them some mini-shade houses during August, so don't worry.)
Here are the first ground troops blooming next to our native skullcap.
The carpet grass is being removed to make room for the new ice plants.
(Yes, I could have planted skullcap, skullcap, and more skullcap...but we both know how we feel about that.....BORING!)
With any luck, they'll look like this by next year.
If you are technically inclined, try a little experiment for me and see if you can scan this tag. Tell me if it worked. I'm guessing it will NOT work. 
I have no idea why ice plants are called ice plants since they are endemic to South Africa and do NOT bloom in fields of ice and snow. I would think CARPET FLOWER would make sense, but I'm not in charge.
At any rate, I'm willing to have a little ice in my hot tropical garden....especially if it's
as beautiful as these little fellows.
That's it for today.
Thanks as always for stopping by.
And for you nomenclature buffs, this last tag will give you the species name:
There's also Delosperma cooperi


  1. Hi David , I've been stalking your site for about a year but have never made a comment. I enjoy your garden and your comments. I too was a teacher for 30 years and am now teaching grandchildren. But that's not why I commented. I love the Ice plant too. I could not find any this spring but I use Moss Rose every summer and wanted to let you know it is a powerhouse for sunny spots and little water as well as the Ice Plant. I use it and purslane extensively in hanging baskets and pots because they don't wilt if I neglect them some. I love, love , love your varieties of Ice Plants and have never seen these varieties before. Have a great summer with the time you have left and please post you other blog address. Happy Gardening!

  2. Your ice plants are gorgeous. I just planted some of these today, too! Great gardeners must think alike! ;) I've always wondered about their name, but surely there some logical explanation. I threw my tags away. Mine were labeled white, but they were blooming purple!

  3. You will love it. We sell tons of them- the purple bloom the most and take the heat very well. the Fire Spinners are cool too and make a nice tight carpet look. They are great- you will love em. They plant them everywhere in CA - they say it helps to stop the spread of wildfires and plant them along the highways- that I have seen, if it deters the fires I have no idea, just what the locals in San Diego told us when I was admiring them. It is funny, people from CA think of them as weeds I guess cause they are everywhere- here in Texas everyone I know loves them- we sell tons and tons of them. They are great and make great spillers out of pots too.

  4. I've tried growing Ice Plant in hot spots here too. It's fabulous for that, but unfortunately the wallabies love to nibble on them. I have the same problem with Portulacas which are also brilliant for hot, dry spots! If only wallabies only ate grass!!!

  5. Based on the atractive words on the tag, ice plants will take roots in your garden. And amazed to know about the "Plant Select" award. I've ever seen some product design award mark when I tried to buy a mobile phone etc. But we don't have those kind of award for plants in our coungry. It's a unique system, and helps gardeners to select plants!
    Looking forward to seeing them in bloom:)

  6. Hola from north Texas!!
    I have and love ice plant. It pairs very nicely with 4 nerve daisy. In Feb. days of sun and warmth, the 2 just are brilliant together. So delightful! This time of year the ice plant is still blooming, but the 4 nerve daisy iis now dormant again.

    Just got back from a nice visit to Galveston- wonderful place to vacation! Love your blog!



I always appreciate your comments & questions! Happy Gardening from David/ Tropical Texana

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