Mesembryanthemum crystallinum

Mesembryanthemum crystallinum_crystalline iceplant_JM DiTomaso
Photo courtesy Joseph DiTomaso

Synonyms: Cryophytum crystallinum

Common names: crystalline iceplant; common iceplant

Mesembryanthemum crystallinum (crystalline iceplant) is a low-growing annual or biennial succulent shrub (family Aizoaceae) found on coastal bluffs of the California coastline and the Channel Islands. It has been used as a landscape ornamental and is named for the small glistening vesicles that cover its leaves and stems. Crystalline iceplant inhibits the growth of native plants by accumulating salt in the soil and by leaving behind mats of dry plant matter that may take several years to decompose. It generally must colonize disturbed areas, and will not usually invade intact grasslands.

Cal-IPC Rating: Moderate — Alert

Cal-IPC Assessment

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.

Weed Management Notes

No Weed RIC Management Notes are available for this species. Check for information on other species in the genus on the Weed RIC site.

Cal-IPC Newsletter Articles

Cal-IPC Symposium Presentations

Presentations are linked where available. Where a presentation is not available, find more information by reading the abstract in the Cal-IPC Symposia Archive.

Other Mesembryanthemum crystallinum Information

  • CalPhotos - Images of plants taken mostly in California.
  • Calflora - See the distribution of this species on Calflora's map of California.
  • CalWeedMapper - Distribution information with ability to determine regional priorities.
  • Jepson Online Interchange for California Flora - Information on taxonomy, biology, and distribution from UC Berkeley's Jepson Herbarium.
  • USDA PLANTS Database - Federal database with information on identification and distribution, and links to websites in individual states.
  • EDDMapS - North American distribution based on Early Detection and Distribution Mapping System.