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Cheiridopsis denticulata (Carpet Weed)


Scientific Name

Cheiridopsis denticulata (Haw.) N.E.Br.

Common Names

Carpet Weed, Lobster Claws


Mesembryanthemum denticulatum (basionym), Cheiridopsis candidissima, Cheiridopsis denticulata var. denticulata, Cheiridopsis inconspicua, Cheiridopsis littlewoodii, Cheiridopsis macrophylla, Cheiridopsis vanheerdei, Mesembryanthemum candidissimum, Mesembryanthemum denticulatum var. candidissimum

Scientific Classification

Family: Aizoaceae
Genus: Cheiridopsis


Cheiridopsis denticulata is a small succulent perennial that grows up to 4 inches (10 cm) tall and spreads up to 12 inches (30 cm) across. Leaves are opposite with 1 or 2, sometimes 3, erect pairs of leaves on many ground-level branches. Often the leaf pairs are dissimilar or unequal and fused in various ways. Leaves are grey-blue with a slightly wrinkled surface, more so in dry conditions. They are triangular in cross-section and the keel tapers to the inside with a tiny spine at the tip. Flowers usually yellow, orange or white, occasionally violet to red and appear in late winter.

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USDA hardiness zones 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Mesembs are mostly adapted to relatively predictable rainfall patterns rather than extreme drought and irregular rainfall. Total rainfall may be extremely low, but water is available at least seasonally or through fog and condensation. This leads to or allows plants which are not especially large and sometimes very small, and affects the way they need to be treated in cultivation.

The basics of care are very simple, with free-draining soil, plenty of sun and ventilation, and regular light watering in the right season. Yet the difficulties are endless, trying to adapt to the Mesembs' own adaptability and to follow their growth habits in your particular conditions.

These plants require a loam-based compost with the addition of extra drainage material such as horticultural grit or perlite. They all like good light conditions and plenty of ventilation.

Some are relatively cold-hardy and can even survive mild winters outside. Most will survive temperatures down to freezing point. There are some Mesembs which begin to grow in the fall as the temperature drops and the days get shorter.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Mesembs.


Cheiridopsis denticulata is native to South Africa (Northern Cape).


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