Mesembryanthemum Crystallinum

Mesembryanthemum Crystallinum Image

Mesembryanthemum Crystallinum is a true marvel of nature, boasting a unique appearance and remarkable adaptations that make it a favorite among succulent enthusiasts and gardeners alike. This comprehensive article will explore the fascinating features, care requirements, and mesmerizing allure of the Crystalline Ice Plant. Prepare to be enchanted by its shimmering beauty and discover why it is a standout choice for succulent collections and coastal landscapes.

Plant’s Description

Mesembryanthemum Crystallinum, also known as the Crystalline Ice Plant, is a succulent native to the coastal regions of South Africa. This plant’s stunning appearance makes it extraordinary, reminiscent of glistening frost or ice crystals. The succulent leaves of Mesembryanthemum crystallinum are covered in tiny, glistening bladder cells, which give them a shimmering, crystalline-like texture. This unique adaptation creates a stunning visual display and serves a functional purpose. The bladder cells reflect sunlight, reducing the plant’s exposure to intense heat and helping conserve moisture – a testament to nature’s ingenuity.

Cultivating and Caring for the Crystalline Ice Plant

The Crystalline Ice Plant is a relatively low-maintenance succulent that can thrive in various climates. By following these essential care guidelines, you can ensure the health, vibrancy, and longevity of your Mesembryanthemum crystallinum:

  • Sunlight: The Crystalline Ice Plant thrives in full sun to partial shade. Providing at least six hours of direct sunlight daily will optimize its growth and enhance its unique crystalline appearance. In hot climates, some afternoon shade can be beneficial to prevent leaf scorching.
  • Soil and Watering: Plant the Crystalline Ice Plant in well-draining soil with a sandy or rocky composition to prevent the risk of root rot. Water the plant sparingly, allowing the soil to dry out between waterings. The Crystalline Ice Plant is naturally adapted to arid environments and tolerates drought.
  • Temperature and Climate: Mesembryanthemum Crystallinum is well-suited to various temperatures but thrives in moderate to warm climates. It is particularly well-adapted to coastal environments, where it can withstand salty air, sandy soils, and exposure to ocean winds.
  • Fertilization: The Crystalline Ice Plant doesn’t require heavy fertilization. Applying a light dose of a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer once in the growing season will contribute to this plant’s healthy growth. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for proper application.
  • Propagation: Propagating the Crystalline Ice Plant is relatively simple and can apply the stem cuttings method. Take a healthy stem and allow the cut end to dry for a few days to be callous. Plant the cutting in moist soil until it establishes roots.
  • Maintenance: To maintain a compact and attractive appearance, trim any dead or leggy growth. Regularly remove weeds or debris around the plant to minimize competition for resources.

DO YOU KNOW? Caring (propagating, pruning/trimming, beheading, watering, …) is a set of skills that is widely applicable to succulents. Read the in-depth guide here >>

Richard Miller – Succulent City

The Crystalline Ice Plant in Coastal Gardens

The Crystalline Ice Plant’s exceptional salt spray and sandy soil tolerance make it a popular choice for coastal gardens. Its reflective bladder cells help reduce water loss and protect against excessive heat, while its unique beauty adds a touch of magic to seaside landscapes. Whether used as ground cover, in rock gardens, or as a container plant, the Crystalline Ice Plant thrives in coastal environments and enhances the natural beauty of coastal gardens.


Mesembryanthemum Crystallinum, the Crystalline Ice Plant, is a mesmerizing succulent that showcases beauty and resilience. Its shimmering leaves and unique adaptations make it a standout choice for succulent enthusiasts and coastal gardeners. With its relatively easy care requirements and ability to thrive in various climates, the Crystalline Ice Plant adds a touch of enchantment to any landscape.

The Mesembryanthemum genus is an exciting genus to watch. Read more below:

Succulent City chief editor


Succulent City

Hey everyone! Welcome to Succulent City! We are all about succulents, cacti, and a bit about air plants. Ten years back, in 2013, we began the journey with succulents. It started as a simple hobby, crafting and selling charming succulent-themed pins and decorations. But as time passed, our fascination with these remarkable plants grew, and we gained extensive knowledge about them. Therefore, Succulent City is the blog as you see it is now. Enjoy your visit and happly planting!

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Posted in Succulents