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Carpobrotus - (L.)L.Bolus.

Common Name Hottentot Fig
Family Aizoaceae
USDA hardiness 8-11
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Sandy and rocky places near the sea[260]. Naturalized on cliffs and banks by the sea in Cornwall and S. Devon[1].
Range S. Africa - Cape Province. Naturalized in Britain[1].
Edibility Rating    (2 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (0 of 5)
Care (info)
Half Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Carpobrotus Hottentot Fig


http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Amrum
Carpobrotus Hottentot Fig
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Amrum

 

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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Carpobrotus is an evergreen Perennial growing to 0.1 m (0ft 4in) by 1 m (3ft 3in).
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 9 and is frost tender. It is in leaf all year, in flower from May to July, and the seeds ripen from August to September. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Bees.
Suitable for: light (sandy) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils and can grow in saline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Mesembryanthemum acinaciforme.

Habitats

Edible Uses

Fruit - raw[1, 61, 89]. There is very little flesh in the fruit and it must be fully ripe otherwise it is very astringent[K]. Insipid[46, 105, 177]. Leaves - raw or cooked[2, 173]. Very mucilaginous, we find it very hard to enjoy them[K].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

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None known

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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FOOD FOREST PLANTS

Other Uses

Planted in maritime areas to prevent soil erosion in sandy soils and on steep banks[200]. Plants form a dense carpet and make an effective ground cover[208]. The plant is moderately fire-resistant and can be used in barrier plantings to prevent the spread of forest fires[200].

Special Uses

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Requires a well-drained sandy soil in a sunny position[1, 200]. Plants can be grown on dry walls or in the flower border[166]. Established plants are very drought resistant[200]. Very resistant to wind and salt spray[166]. Moderately fire-retardant[200]. Plants are not very frost resistant and can be killed by temperatures below about -2°c. They have naturalized themselves on cliffs along the coast of S. Britain but do not succeed inland unless grown in a sunny sheltered position[200]. A vigorous prostrate plant, rooting as it spreads. The flowers only open in the afternoon[200].

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

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Propagation

Seed - surface sow March to June in a greenhouse. Lower night-time temperatures are beneficial. The seed usually germinates in 7 - 10 days at 23°c[138]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings at any time during the growing season. Allow the cutting to dry in the sun for a day or two then pot up in a very sandy mix. Very easy[K].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Carpobrotus acinaciformisHottentot FigPerennial0.1 8-11  LNDM203
Carpobrotus aequilaterusSea FigPerennial0.2 7-10  LMNDM203
Carpobrotus deliciosusSweet Hottentot FigPerennial0.2 7-10  LMHSNM202
Carpobrotus edulisHottentot Fig,Perennial0.1 7-10  LNDM222
Carpobrotus glaucescensPigfacePerennial0.3 8-11  LMHSNDM322
Carpobrotus modestusInland PigfacePerennial0.2 8-11  LMHSNDM00 
Carpobrotus rossiiKarkallaPerennial0.2 8-11  LMHSNDM00 
Carpobrotus virescensCoastal PigfacePerennial0.5 8-11  LMHSNDM00 

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.

 

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Expert comment

Author

(L.)L.Bolus.

Botanical References

200

Links / References

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