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annual

Heartleaf Iceplant

Aptenia cordifolia

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Heartleaf Iceplant (Aptenia cordifolia) at Echter's Nursery & Garden Center

Heartleaf Iceplant

Heartleaf Iceplant

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  4 inches

Spread:  24 inches

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade 

Hardiness Zone:  (annual)

Other Names:  Baby Sun Rose, Heart-leaved Aptenia, Midday Flower

Description:

This succulent groundcover plant produces bright magenta-red flowers over rich green foliage in summer; blooms only open in mid-day sun; an interesting plant to include in a rockery, or a combination planter; used for soil retention as well

Ornamental Features

Heartleaf Iceplant features dainty clusters of fuchsia daisy flowers with red overtones and gold eyes held atop the stems from mid spring to late summer. Its attractive small succulent heart-shaped leaves emerge chartreuse in spring, turning lime green in color the rest of the year. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Landscape Attributes

Heartleaf Iceplant is a dense spreading annual with a ground-hugging habit of growth. It brings an extremely fine and delicate texture to the garden composition and should be used to full effect.

This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and can be pruned at anytime. It is a good choice for attracting butterflies to your yard. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Heartleaf Iceplant is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Rock/Alpine Gardens
  • Border Edging
  • General Garden Use
  • Groundcover
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Heartleaf Iceplant will grow to be only 4 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 24 inches. Its foliage tends to remain low and dense right to the ground. Although it's not a true annual, this fast-growing plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.

This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It prefers dry to average moisture levels with very well-drained soil, and will often die in standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in sandy soils, and is able to handle environmental salt. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This species is not originally from North America. It can be propagated by division.

Heartleaf Iceplant is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. Because of its spreading habit of growth, it is ideally suited for use as a 'spiller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the edges where it can spill gracefully over the pot. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

 
 
Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Characteristics
Rock  Edging  Garden  Groundcover  Container 
Applications
Flowers  Foliage Color  Texture  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features

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