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Delosperma sphalmanthoides (Tufted Ice Plant)


Scientific Name

Delosperma sphalmanthoides S.A.Hammer

Common Names

Tufted Ice Plant

Scientific Classification

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


Delosperma sphalmanthoides is a small, compact and cold hardy succulent. it is the smallest species in the genus. The leaves are minuscule, blue-green, finger-like, held upward in a small cushion that may grow up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) tall and up to 12 inches (30 cm) in diameter. The crowded leaves are covered in spring by magenta colored flowers.

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USDA hardiness zones 5a to 10b: from −20 °F (−28.9 °C) to 40 °F (+4.4 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Delospermas grow in USDA plant hardiness zones 5 to 9 and will bloom for most of the summer and fall. Their foliage is mostly evergreen and because of this, they make a great year-round ground cover. While the plant is evergreen, it will often have some dieback of foliage in the winter.

These plants prefer full sun but can tolerate some light shade in the garden. Because they are succulents, they do not tolerate wet soil, though they do well in poor soils. In fact, wet soil, especially during the winter months, is likely to kill the plants. In areas where the soil stays consistently dry, this plant can become invasive, so it is best to take this into consideration when planting it.

Delosperma can be propagated by division, cuttings or seeds. If propagating by division, it is best to divide the plants in the spring. Cuttings can be taken anytime in the spring, summer or fall. When grown by seeds, scatter the seeds on the surface of the soil and do not cover them, as they need light to germinate.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Delosperma.


Delosperma sphalmanthoides is native to South Africa (Cape Province).


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