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Delosperma cooperi (Purple Ice Plant)


Scientific Name

Delosperma cooperi (Hook.f.) L.Bolus

Common Names

Hardy Ice Plant, Trailing Ice Plant, Pink Carpet, Purple Ice Plant, Hardy Purple Ice Plant, Cooper's Ice Plant, Cooper's Hardy Ice Plant


Mesembryanthemum cooperi

Scientific Classification

Family: Aizoaceae
Subfamily: Ruschioideae
Tribe: Ruschieae
Genus: Delosperma


Delosperma cooperi is a perennial, evergreen succulent, with needle-like leaves studded with fluorescent pink, up to 2 inches (5 cm) long, up to 0.25 inch (6 mm) wide and up to 0.2 inch (5 mm) thick, nearly cylindrical, but flattened on the top. The daisy-like flowers are magenta or pink in color, up to 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter.


USDA hardiness zone 5a to 9b: from −20 °F (−28.9 °C) to 30 °F (−1.1 °C).

How to Grow and Care

This succulent is indigenous to South Africa, where it is an evergreen. Belying its origin, this hardy perennial can be grown in USDA zones 5-9. At the northern end of this range, however, note 2 things:

  1. Winter hardiness is not a given. Purple Ice Plant may not survive a difficult winter in USDA zone 5.
  2. Its leaves will not be evergreen, even if it does survive. Treat it as an herbaceous perennial.

Planting it in full sun and in a superbly well-drained soil are critical steps to growing this sun-loving ground cover successfully. Avoid planting in a clayey soil unless you are willing to improve percolation there with soil amendments. Purple Ice Plants are drought-resistant plants and do not require rich soils, but they hate to be sitting in water.

Despite their resistance to drought and dislike of wet feet, they will profit from an occasional watering in the heat of summer, as long as the drainage is excellent... – See more at: How to Grow and Care for a Purple Ice Plant (Delosperma cooperi)


Native to Lesotho and South Africa (Free State).


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