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Lampranthus Plant Growing & Care Guide for Gardeners

Article by Dean Ravenscroft, Ph.D. - Updated 25th Nov 2023

In this Gardener's HQ guide, we'll explore cultivating Lampranthus plants in your garden, indoor spaces, and other settings.

At a Glance: Lampranthus
  • Plant Characteristics: Lampranthus dazzles with its vibrant, daisy-like flowers and succulent leaves. These plants are perfect for adding a burst of color to dry, sunny areas in the garden.
  • Ideal Growing Conditions: Prefers full sun and a well-drained, sandy soil. Highly drought-tolerant and thrives in warm, dry climates.
  • General Care: Low maintenance; requires minimal watering once established. Protect from frost to ensure year-round growth.
  • Tips for New Gardeners: Ice Plant is an excellent choice for beginners, especially in dry or coastal gardens. Its easy care nature and striking appearance make it a rewarding plant to grow.

Ice Plant: Cultivation & Garden Use

Members of Lampranthus are half hardy perennials.

They flower in the spring with daisy like flowers of orange, pink, white or purple.

Lampranthus zeyheri
Lampranthus zeyheri by Leo-setä.

They make ideal plants for use as a container plant or in garden beds.

Lampranthus aureus
Lampranthus aureus by Derek Keats.

Commonly Grown Lampranthus Species

Lampranthus deltoides

Lampranthus deltoides
Lampranthus deltoides Syn. Oscularia deltoides (Deltoid-leaved dewplant), photograph by cultivar413; CC.

Lampranthus aurantiacus

Lampranthus aurantiacus
Lampranthus aurantiacus (Trailing Iceplant), picture by Manuel m. v.; CC.

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Lampranthus Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Lampranthus, Ice Plant
Life Cycle: Half hardy perennial.
Height: 8 to 24 inches (20 to 60 cm), often grows prostrate.
Native: Southern Africa.
Family: Aizoaceae (previously Ficoidaceae).
Growing Region: Zones 9 to 10.
Flowers: Spring and/ summer and/or autumn.
Flower Details: Yellow, red, white, purple, orange, pink. Daisy-like ray and disc florets. Up to 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter.
Foliage: Succulent. Blue-green. Dark green. Fused at the base of the plant.
Sow Outside: Cover seed. After the last frost. Spacing  6 to 24 inches (15 to 60 cm).
Sow Inside: Germination time: two weeks to one month. Temperature: 65 to 75°F (18 to 24°C) in the dark. Seven or eight weeks in advance. Transplant outdoors following the last frost of spring; temperatures should not drop below 40°F (4°C).
Requirements and care: Full sunlight. Good drainage. Stony, sandy. Mix in manure. Likes dry soils. Occasional watering during dry periods; can survive droughts. Prune dead stems in the autumn. Propagate: by taking cuttings in the spring or summer.
Miscellaneous: The name of the genus Lampranthus comes from the Greek words for bright (Lampros) and flower (anthos).

How to Grow Lampranthus

If planning to grow Lampranthus outdoors from the off it is best to sow out the seed in following the last frost of spring, simply cover the seeds.

The seeds should be sown in a sunny area of the garden that has excellent drainage.

The soil should be dry and stony; at the time of sowing add manure.

When starting to grow Lampranthus plants indoors first, then they should be started about two months before they are due to be transplanted out; a few weeks after the last frost of spring.

They will take from two to four weeks to germinate in the dark at a temperature of 18 to 24 degrees Centigrade (64 to 75°F).

Caring for Lampranthus Plants

Once the Lampranthus plants are growing in the garden they are easy to look after.

They like to grow in dry soil so only water in very prolonged dry spells.

Once the season is over, cut the plants back by pruning the dead stems in the autumn.

If you want more plants then take cuttings in the springtime.

Common Questions

How many members does the Lampranthus genus have?

The Lampranthus genus has around 250 species. These succulent plants are known for their vibrant, daisy-like flowers.

Do members of Lampranthus make a good garden or landscaping plant?

Yes, Lampranthus species make excellent garden plants, particularly in rockeries or xeriscaping due to their drought tolerance and bright flowers.

Which Lampranthus species are most frequently grown by gardeners?

One popular species is Lampranthus spectabilis (Trailing Ice Plant) due to its vibrant, magenta flowers and trailing growth habit.

Are members of the Lampranthus plant genus fragrant?

While the Lampranthus genus is not generally known for fragrance, the vibrant colors of their flowers are a true feast for the eyes.

What is the perfect location to grow Lampranthus?

Lampranthus prefers sunny locations with well-drained soil. They are perfect for rockeries, hanging baskets, and containers.

Is Lampranthus invasive in the USA, if so in which states?

Currently, Lampranthus species are not considered invasive in the USA.

How do I remove Lampranthus plants from my garden?

To remove Lampranthus, simply dig up the entire plant. Be sure to remove all roots to prevent it from growing back.

Summary

The Lampranthus genus, a member of the Aizoaceae family, comprises perennial succulents native to South Africa. Known for their bright, daisy-like flowers, these plants are often used in rock gardens and containers.

Lampranthus prefers full sun and well-drained soil. It is drought-tolerant once established. Propagation is typically done through cuttings, taken in the summer months.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Lampranthus plants. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's Growing Guides: How to Grow Mesembryanthemum; Hutchinsia; Asclepias incarnata; and Sedum plants.

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