The word "succulent" brings up images of cactus plants with smooth, plump parts. Meanwhile, "daisy" conjures images of lush-flowering garden plants. It's hard to believe that the two words could be combined to describe one plant. Succulents known as ice plants, however, blossom with daisy-like flowers.
Several genera have the general name "ice plant." Their common factor is their daisy flower. The majority of these plants are low-growing ground covers. Another plant is a more bushlike variety. Native to southern and eastern regions of Africa, the ice plant has evolved into a ground cover that can flourish in less than ideal growing conditions.
Delosperma, or ice plant, as it is commonly known, is a succulent that has a daisy-like blossom. Its showy flowers have hues ranging from pink to purple. The bright colourful blossoms aid in attracting pollinators in an often bleak landscape. The low-growing ice plant has matlike foliage designed to withstand many hardships, such as drought, heat and frost.
Known as the Bush Orange Ice Plant, Malephora crassa is a more bushlike, upright succulent that grows wider than it grows tall. Its average size is 18 is high and 24 inches wide. Spring blooms that are bright orange cover the plant with multipetal, daisy-like flowers. Originating from South Africa, the plant has been in cultivation for about 200 years, yet is still relatively unknown.
Daisy-bearing succulents have many names. They may be referred to as Aizoaceae, the ice plant family, and Conicosia, the narrow-leaf ice plant. Other names include Delosperma cooperi, Cooper's ice plant, or New Zealand's ice plant, Maori, Disphyma australe. The list also includes the Lampranthus species as well as the Sedum genus.