Carpobrotus chilensis

Photo courtesy Joseph DiTomaso

Synonyms: Mesembryanthemum chilensis, Carpobrotus mellei, Carpobrotus aequilaterus

Common names: sea fig; iceplant

Carpobrotus chilensis (sea-fig, iceplant) is a succulent shrub (family Aizoaceae) found throughout coastal California and the Channel Islands, especially in areas with a warm winter climate. Carpobrotus chilensis may have been introduced during early Spanish settlement. It now inhabits coastal scrub, grasslands, chaparral, bluffs, dunes and beaches, where it creates dense mats that increase soil organic matter over time, allowing new non-native species to invade. Sea-fig propagates by seed and vegetatively. Even small stem fragments can regenerate into a new plant, making control difficult.

Rating: Moderate

Cal-IPC Resources

  • Plant Assessment Form - Information gathered by Cal-IPC on the impacts, rate of spread, and distribution of invasive plants in California. Does not include management information.
  • CalWeedMapper - Statewide maps, climate models, and reports.
  • Cal-IPC News - Our quarterly newsletter. Each issue is available as a pdf.
  • Cal-IPC Symposium Proceedings - Presentations and papers from our annual Symposium.
  • Don't Plant a Pest! - Select your region to find non-invasive alternatives to ornamental species. Also see our statewide brochure on trees.

    Other Resources

    Symposium Presentations

    • Clifford, P., A. J. Pickart, et al. (2005). Invasive annual grasses in a coastal dune ecosystem. California Invasive Plant Council Symposium 2005. Chico, CA.

    Cal-IPC News Articles

    • Schwartz, S. (2009). East Bay volunteers head to the hills and the shores. Cal-IPC News. 16: 8-9.
    • (1993). California Exotic Pest Plant Council draft list exotic plants of greatest concern October 1993. CalEPPC News. 1: 6.