What is a Hottentot-fig Ice Plant? – Grow & Care for a Hottentot-fig Ice Plant

Do you know what a Hottentot-fig ice plant is? Have you ever planted this in your garden? If not, let me help you grow them.

Yes, achieving a high success rate in growing them is possible when you provide the plant with all the basic requirements. Now, you may be thinking, what do they need? How to grow them?

Don’t worry; here I have explained in detail a step-by-step method that will help you grow them in your garden. Happy to know this? So what are you waiting for? Let’s learn more about this plant by reading the entire article.

What is a Hottentot-fig Plant? 

Carpobrotus edulis is a strong, drooping plant, a member of the Azo family, known for forming dense pads of leaves. Carpobrotus edulis is native to coastal habitats in South Africa and was brought to the coast of California in the early 20th century to stabilize soil along railroad tracks. 

The Hottentot fig ice plant (Carpobrotus edulis) was introduced to California from South Africa as a soil-stabilizing plant. This super easy-to-grow plant has invasive potential in coastal weedy areas like Southern California. In most gardens, however, plants can be controlled with little effort, and Hottentot fig flowers are a delightful start to the season.

So, folks, are you clear with the concept of the Hottentot-fig ice plant? If not, then let’s know about it a little bit deeper. Hottentot fig is an ice plant that once grown spreads wildly.

The plant is natural as it became a weed and requires a protective system, to prevent them from other habitats. The fruit of this plant is edible and delicious. 

Common NameIce plant, cold hardy ice plant, trailing ice plant, sea fig, Hottentot
Scientific NameLampranthus, Delosperma, and Carpobrotus edulis (plus many more!)
Height & Spread0.5 feet tall, 2 feet wide
LightFull sun
SoilSandy loam, well-draining
WaterSparse watering
Pests & DiseasesAphids, mealybugs, downy mildew
What is a Hottentot-fig Ice Plant? - Grow & Care for a Hottentot-fig Ice Plant

How to grow a Hottentot-fig ice plant? 

Do you know how to propagate the Hottentot-fig ice plant? If you want to grow it follow the instructions:

Step 1- Remove or nip off a section with the roots fully.

Step 2- Make sure not to keep it in over moist soil.

Step 3- After placing it in the soil, you are done now.

Let it grow and spread likewise as the roots will take more than 2 weeks to flourish.

Is the Hottentot-fig ice plant Intrusive? 

The Hottentot fig ice plant (Carpobrotus edulis) was introduced to California from South Africa as a soil-stabilizing plant. Ice plant sprawl roots and ground cover help stop erosion in California’s coastal dunes. However, the plant has become so naturalized that it is now classified as a weed and requires careful management to prevent it from occupying native plant habitats.

The flowers of the Hottentot fig do not develop into detectable fruit and are not related to the fig tree, so the reason for the “fig” in the name is unclear.

This plant grows so easily and well in its new area that growing Hottentot figs in USDA plant hardiness zones 9 through 11 is a no-brainer, so it’s a no-brainer to use it for wild control​​​ There are a few factors to consider when eroding.

How to care for a Hottentot-fig ice plant? 

Let’s know how to take care of the growing Hottentot fig ice plant. Below are the tips which will tell you how you can take care of this plant: 

  • The fragrance of this plant is edible and you can even eat the fruit of this plant when it gets healthy and fresh. Do you know about its growing range? Surprisingly it can grow up to 4-5 inches in diameter.
  • You should keep the plant at a temperature between 40 and 58 degrees Fahrenheit. It tends to grow in the full sun and if you are growing it inside your home, then place it in a sunny environment. 
  • You have to plant it in sandy and well-drained soil if you want to grow the plant healthily. This plant can even bear winds and salt spray and can be grown on drywalls. 
  • Ensure to keep the planting area sandy to have a neutral pH. You can propagate the plant with cuttings and seeds as well. 
  • These plants can not bear the over-moist soil in wintertime. When you water the plants, let the soil dry and then give the water for nourishment. 

Is there any recipe for the Hottentot-fig ice plant?

Yes, there is a great recipe for this which will be explained in the below lines. Before that let’s see what are the required materials or ingredients: 

  • 3/4 Hottentot fig fruit.
  • 4 tbsp sweet apple juice.
  • 2 wild garlic.
  • Sea salt for taste.
  • Olive oil.
  • 2 tbsp sea buckthorn juice.
  • ¼ pt berry extract.
  • 2 tbsp black mustard seeds. 
  • Family seeds. 

Let’s know how to make the salad dressing with the help of the following instructions: 

Step 1- Firstly, you have to chop the Hottentot figs.

Step 2- Squeeze everything in a bowl.

Step 3- Pick berries from staghorn sumac berry clusters and mash them in spring water with a potato masher;

Step 4- Stain ¼ pt of the extract.

Step 5- Mix with all other ingredients.

Step 6- Pour into a bottle, refrigerate, and use within a week.

This is how you are done with the tasty salad dressing. 

How to Propagate Hottentot-fig Ice plant

 There is not much chance of propagating the Hottentot-fig Ice plant as they are used to spread rarely. The following are some steps in case you want them to grow separately:

  • First, you need to snip off a plant having complete roots.
  • After which you can keep the plant in any soil which should not be too moist.
  • You observe the growth of the plant.
  • The roots will start growing taking at least 3 weeks. They are used to grow fast when the plant is set in separately. 
  • You need to plant the young plant and it should be in a fresh location.  

Common species of Hottentot-fig Ice plants:

Here are some common species of the plant which you can grow in your garden:

  • Delosperma cooperi (Cooper’s ice plant) – blooms magenta
  • Delosperma ‘Kelaidis’ which are light pink flowers growing in hardy to zone 4
  • Delosperma nubigenum which are yellow flowers in which most are cold hardy
  • Delosperma ‘Jewel of the Desert Garnet’  which are red and purple bi-color flowers
  • Lampranthus spectabilis has white, purple, or pink flowers that are used to spread quickly
  • Lampranthus aurantiacus are orange flowers that belong to early bloomers
  • Carpobrotus edulis that are used to grow in pink, yellow, or white flowers.

The problem of Pests or Diseases:

To grow a plant in your garden the biggest problem you can struggle with is the weather. If it rains it will make the soil too wet which will slow the growth of the plant and cause root rot. The plant can also get attacked by mealybugs and plant scales and to get rid of them you need to use glyphosate herbicides.


The efforts and Melbourne are the most common pests that are attracted to most of the succulents. These aphids are used to feed on plant sap. In case the attack is done by a large number of pests the growth of the plants will be affected and get foliage wilt and in the end, it will die.

Applying neem oil will help in getting rid and you can also use insecticidal soap or diatomaceous earth. In extreme cases, you need to apply pyrethrin spray or spinosad spray.  


They are used to getting infected with downy mildew, a fungus discovered in California in 2019. The disease will start forming molds that will coat the foliage in blue-grey growth that will result in destroying plant issues. Once the disease infects the plant it is very difficult to eradicate them. To get rid you need to apply fungicide but I will not confirm whether they will recover or not. 

Wrapping up the context 

In this article, you come to know about the Hottentot fig ice plant. Hottentot fig is an ice plant that once grown spreads wildly. The plant is natural as it became a weed and requires a protective system, to prevent them from other habitats. The fruit of this plant is edible and delicious. I hope this article will be helpful for you all. 


The reason behind hottentot fig invasive?

these are plants that tend to get squeezed out and smoother native plants.

Are the roots of the plant deep in the soil?

The plant’s root system is relatively shallow and fibrous.

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