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DOROTHEANTHUS bellidiformis

Image of Dorotheanthus bellidiformis

James Burghardt

Family

Aizoaceae

Botanical Name

DOROTHEANTHUS bellidiformis

Plant Common Name

Ice Plant, Livingstone Daisy

General Description

Livingstone daisy is an easy-to-grow annual that becomes covered in neon-hued, daisy-like blooms all season long. It is native to South Africa and the genus is named in honor of plantsman Dr. Martin Heinrich Gustav Schwantes’s mother, Dorothea. Also called ice plant, this mat-forming beauty is a true rock garden plant adapted to sunny, open, rocky ares with sharply drained soil. It thrives were summers are not too hot or humid.

The flat, fleshy, succulent, spatula-shaped leaves of ice plant are held alternately on branching stems and are covered with shiny, white dots. A profusion of single, daisy-like flowers cover the plant while the sun shines. They close at night or in cloudy weather. The blooms are brilliantly hued in shades of red, pink, orange and yellow. Some have lighter contrasting bands at the petal bases. The center of the flowers is yellow and attract bees and other insect pollinators. The fruits are brown capsule that splits open to release the seeds inside.

Ice plant grows best in areas where days are warm and dry and nights cool but above freezing. Grow it as a spring annual in cooler climates and a fall or winter annual in zones with mild winters. This rock lover requires very well-drained soil, with low to moderate fertility. Moist ground or over-watering can quickly kill plants. Full sun is required for best blooming. Sow the seeds indoors several weeks before the last frost date and transplant when soil is warm and danger of frost has passed. Deadheading old flowers will encourage more blooms. Livingstone daisy is a great choice for rock gardens, beds, boarders and containers.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 1

  • Sunset Zone

    A2, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Annual

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun

  • Height

    6"-12" / 15.2cm - 30.5cm

  • Width

    10"-18" / 25.4cm - 45.7cm

  • Bloom Time

    Spring, Indeterminate

  • Native To

    South Africa

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Salt

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Spreading

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    White, Yellow, Red, Purple, Orange, Pink, Hot Pink, Fuchsia, Peach

  • Flower Color Modifier

    Bicolor, Multi-Color

  • Fruit Color

    Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Light Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Light Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Light Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Light Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Alpine, Bedding Plant, Container, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Butterflies

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes