What is an ice plant?
Does it have any other common names?
Which types of ice plant can usually be found growing in Arizona, and why?
Ice plants are a type of succulent in the Delosperma genus. They are perennial and are usually used for ground cover. Normally, they are bright green, but they can sometimes grow colorful, vibrant flowers under the right conditions as well. They can sometimes also be called trailing ice plants or pink carpet plants.
Copper ice plant, rosea ice plant, and hardy yellow ice plant are the most common types found in Arizona. They like desert conditions and enjoy growing in the bright sunlight. Additionally, they can grow well without the need for too much water, making them ideal for droughts. These plants are easy to find throughout Arizona gardens and in homes, too.
In the article below, we’ll walk you through the basics you need to know about how to care for an ice plant when you live in Arizona. You’ll find information about the required growing conditions for this type of plant as well as what to expect from taking care of one.
By the time you finish reading, you should be prepared to bring home a new ice plant or start providing better conditions for the ones you may already have.
Read on to find out more about how to grow an ice plant when you live in Arizona.
Growing Ice Plant in Arizona
1. Where should you place your ice plant?
- Ice plants need to be placed in a sunny location. Ideally, they should be in direct sunlight most of the day, although they may tolerate some light shade in the afternoon.
- Ice plants should not be placed in locations where they could receive too much water.
2. What kind of soil do you need, and should you fertilize?
- An ice plant should be planted in loamy or sandy soil, but it can also handle being planted in gravelly soil. It does not require high-quality soil for growth, but it does need exceptionally good drainage.
- You should avoid fertilizer as much as possible, as it can be detrimental to many types of succulents.
3. Can you grow ice plants indoors or in containers?
- Yes, ice plants be grown indoors as long as they have access to bright light from a window throughout most of the day.
- Ice plants can also be grown well in containers. They do not get very large, so they are well-suited to container gardening with the right type of soil.
4. How big are ice plants when mature, and are they invasive?
- As ground cover, ice plants are wider than they are tall.
- These plants grow to a height of about six inches, but can spread up to four feet in width if given enough space to do so.
5. Do ice plants flower, and if so, when?
- Yes, ice plants are known for their beautiful flowers. The flowers can come in many colors, but bright pink and purple are the most common.
- These flowers open up during the spring, although the plants may produce a second round of flowers during the summer months if they’re kept under ideal growing conditions.
6. What kinds of insects do ice plants attract?
- Ice plants can attract pollinators. These may include bumblebees, honeybees, wasps, and butterflies, all of which love the vibrant colors of the flowers found on an ice plant.
- If you’re looking to build a desert pollinator garden, ice plants are an excellent addition.
7. How do you propagate an ice plant?
- Cut a piece off of the ice plant just below an area of growth.
- Place this cut piece in moistened but not wet soil and wait for it to grow roots.
- Additionally, you can also propagate ice plants by dividing the plant into two during the spring, then planting them separately and letting them grow full again.
8. What are some pros of growing an ice plant?
- Ice plants are excellent choices for xeriscaping because they fit in well with a desert environment. They do not require any complicated care and can handle high temperatures and low water.
- These plants bloom most of the spring and summer, making them aesthetically pleasing additions to your garden or lawn. They can be encouraged to bloom even more by keeping them in ideal growing conditions.
- Once an ice plant is established, it’s very easy to take care of. Even beginners or those who do not have much experience with succulents usually have no trouble with ice plants.
9. What are some cons?
- Ice plants can be difficult to care for if they get too much rain or water from other sources, and root rot is common in this plant.
- It can be tricky to encourage your ice plant to flower, especially if it does not have access to bright sunlight most of the day.
Did you learn everything you wanted to know about growing ice plants in Arizona? With the help of the information listed above, you should be prepared to tackle growing and caring for these plants in your region. Remember this advice so you can provide the ideal growing conditions for your ice plants, too.
If you’re still looking for some idea of what an ice plant looks like or how you’re supposed to use it in your garden or lawn, we’ve got you covered there, too. We’ve gathered a small collection of pictures to help you better understand the ice plant, and you can use these images to get some inspiration for your own ice plants, too.
1. Purple Ice Plant
This image shows a vibrant collection of bright pink-purple flowers that have yellow centers. These flowers are growing from a bright green ice plant with leaves that can be seen behind the flowers, providing a subtle backdrop for the color.
2. Rocky Point
This picture shows a small, bright green ice plant growing in rocky soil. It has grown two delicate little yellow flowers on the ends of some of its branches, and these flowers draw attention to the plant by providing plenty of aesthetic appeal. This is a small plant, but it is very healthy.
3. Arizona Gardening
This image shows a group of ice plants that are all being grown together in a small cluster. The plants are all flowering, and each one has different colors of flowers, including pink, orange, purple, yellow, and white. The plants all have bright green leaves and are being grown in loose soil.
4. Ice Plant Ground Cover
This image shows bright green foliage that is interspersed periodically with rich purple-pink flowers. These flowers have bright yellow centers and white accents, which makes them even more noticeable among the green of the ice plant. This is a very healthy plant with a lot of floral growth.
5. Ice Plant Buds
This image shows what it might look like when your ice plant first begins to open its flowers. This picture shows a healthy, happy plant that is packed with yellow buds, all of which are getting ready to open. The plant has yellow-green leaves that complement the flowers perfectly.