Originally from southern Africa, the mesebryantemum genus in the past included about a thousand species, today it has been dismembered in numerous genera. The species currently indicated with the traditional name, are used to cultivate the slopes, the rock gardens and for the borders.
They are succulent, herbaceous plants, sometimes shrub-like and some without stems.
The leaves are fleshy, conical or pyramidal, green or glaucous or purple.
Showy and lively are the most varied colors: white, yellow from red to purple pink and orange.
The petals are long and narrow and open in daylight and in some species only in direct sunlight.
The fruit is a capsule that opens and closes automatically in humid conditions.
Mesembryanthemum - Mesembryantemum: Variety
We can mention some varieties:
M. Acinoforme (Fico degli Ottentotti) originates in South Africa but has adapted to the Italian coastal areas. Height 20-30 cm, is a plant with prostrate stems - ascending and wedge-shaped crescent leaves. The purple flowers bloom from May to July and open only in the sun.
M. Edule: perennial plant similar to the previous one with yellow flowers and fleshy and edible fruits.