Icy Ficoide (Mesembryanthemum Crystallinum), Amazing Leaves

Icy Ficoide (Mesembryanthemum crystallinum)

The glacial ficoïde (Mesembryanthemum crystallinum), also called icy purslane, ice herb or crystalline ficoïde, is noticed immediately in the garden because it detonates by its beauty and its originality especially as it is, in addition, tasty.

It is an old perennial leaf vegetable grown as an annual plant, which is presented as a groundcover. It is a plant of heat that it supports very well; on the other hand, she does not like cold or excess humidity.

Its simple, lanceolate and fleshy leaves are covered with small transparent vesicles that evoke drops of water or ice crystals, which earns its so pictorial names.

Tiny, daisy-like flowers appear in the axils of the leaves: let them give seeds, also small, to sow the next season, or cut them to favor the emergence of new leaves.

It is consumed by adding it to a salad as lettuce to give a note of originality. Its flavor is refreshing and tart at the same time.

  • Family: Aizoaceae
  • Type: Perennial grown in annual
  • Origin: South Africa
  • Color: pinkish white flowers
  • Sowing: yes
  • Cutting: no
  • Plantation: May to July
  • Harvest: July to October
  • Height: 30 cm maximum

Ideal soil and exposure for the glacial ficoïde

The icy ficoïde, in spite of its name, needs heat and sun, besides it grows spontaneously in Greece and the Canary Islands. It needs a soil rich in humus, sandy and well drained.

Date of sowing and planting of the glacial fictoid

The seedlings in place are from May to July when the ground has warmed up, in line or in pockets to clear up to 20 cm.

Some plant seedlings of 4-5 seeds in buckets under chassis in April before planting them in May-June.

Advice of maintenance and culture of the glacial ficoïde

Apart from the removal of flowers to promote the development of new leaves, the glacial ficoïde does not require any specific maintenance. Hoeing and watering in case of drought will suffice.

Harvest, conservation and use of glacial ficoids

Icy Ficoide (Mesembryanthemum crystallinum), amazing leaves

The harvest runs from July to frosts. The branches of leaves are cut as and when your needs because they do not keep well.

Raw, the leaves are eaten in a salad. Cooked, they are cooked in butter like spinach.

Diseases, pests and parasites of the glacial ficoïde

Only slugs can come to eat the plant.

Location and favorable association of the glacial fictoid

It is a plant that is grown in the garden by spacing rows of 15 cm to create a ground cover that will prevent weeds from becoming embedded.

As it is original and unusual, it can also be installed along the borders of annuals or gardener where it will play, in addition, an ornamental role.

Apart from the type species, there are no specific varieties.

Video: iceplant.

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