Corpuscularia lehmannii [kor-pus-koo-LAY-ree-uh] [lay-MAH-nee-eye] is a compact succulent with thick blue-green leaves.
The species is currently threatened in its native region due to invasive species and habitat degradation.
It’s mostly found near Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape province in South Africa.
The plant belongs to the Aizoaceae (fig-marigold) family.
Corpuscularia lehmannii is commonly called along with many others the ice plant.
The common name “ice plant” is used for most species in the Aizoaceae family.
The flowers of these plants tend to have small particles resembling ice crystals or frost.
Corpuscularia Lehmannii Care
Size and Growth
The ice plant may reach up to 12″ inches tall and wide. It produces thick leaves growing in opposite pairs.
Corpuscularia lehmannii has a moderately fast growth rate.
The thick, succulent leaves are blueish-green to light green.
The leaves grow on long shoots and measure about 1″ inch long.
Flowering and Fragrance
Flowers appear in late spring or early summer.
The plant has small yellow flowers growing from stalks.
The stalks contain several flowers, each measuring less than an inch.
The petals are slightly translucent.
After the flowers appear, the plant produces six to eight chambered fruit capsules containing small seeds.
Light and Temperature
Place the plant in an area with full sun.
Corpuscularia lehmannii requires lots of sunlight to encourage hardy growth and more vibrant color in the leaves.
The ice plant doesn’t tolerate frost.
It survives winters in USDA hardiness zones 9A to 11, requiring a minimum temperature of 41° degrees Fahrenheit (5° C).
Watering and Feeding
- As with most succulents, the ice plant doesn’t require frequent watering.
- Overwatering is one of the most common causes of disease in the plant.
- Allow the soil to dry out between each watering.
- Typically, when the top 2″ to 3″ inches are dry, it’s time to water the plant.
- Thoroughly soak the soil when watering.
TIP: Bottom watering helps reduce the risk of overwatering.
- Immerse the container in water or fill the saucer with water, allowing the soil and roots to draw up the soil through the drainage holes.
- Using fertilizer may encourage fuller growth as succulents are often nitrogen-deficient.
- Use a liquid fertilizer specially formulated for succulents.
- Dilute the fertilizer to half strength and apply once or twice per month during the spring and summer.
Soil and Transplanting
Succulents require soil with good drainage. Use cactus or succulent potting mix.
The soil should dry out more quickly compared to standard garden soil.
It’s also possible to combine material to create the right mix.
- Combine equal parts regular potting soil, sand, and perlite or pumice.
- Avoid transplanting the plant unless necessary.
- Moving the plant may harm the root system and the overall health of the plant.
- Only transplant during the spring or summer, giving the plant several months to recover before it goes dormant for winter.
- When transplanting, prepare a new pot with a succulent mix.
- Fill the pot with soil while allowing enough room for the plant and its roots.
- After transplanting, water the soil thoroughly and add liquid fertilizer.
While the ice plant doesn’t need grooming, pruning dead foliage and flowers keeps the plant looking tidy.
How to Propagate Ice Plant Succulent
Propagate the ice plant with cuttings or seeds.
- To propagate the plant using cuttings, cut off one or more pieces of stem.
- Allow the cuttings to dry for at least 24 hours.
NOTE: Collect the cuttings any time of the year other than winter.
- The cuttings should form calluses.
- Prepare the soil in individual 4″ inch pots.
- Dip the calloused ends of the cuttings in rooting hormone powder.
- Stick the ends of the cuttings in the prepared soil.
- Water the soil thoroughly and allow it to dry before watering again completely.
- The stems should slowly develop roots and start producing new growth.
- Make sure the young plants receive lots of light.
Before sowing the seeds, prepare small pots or seed starter trays with a moistened succulent mix.
- Sprinkle the seeds over the soil.
- Place the trays or pots in an area with full sun throughout most of the day.
- The seedlings should emerge within six to eight weeks.
- If using trays, allow the seedlings to grow for several more weeks before transplanting.
Ice Plant Succulent Pest or Disease Problems
This ice plant isn’t invasive or considered toxic.
It’s also virtually free of pest and disease problems.
The main concerns are fungal growth or rot due to overwatering or excess humidity.
If the plant receives too much moisture, the leaves may develop spots.
Gray or white webbing may also appear around the base of the plant.
Infected plants should be removed from succulent gardens to protect other plants.
Propagation is the best way to try saving the plant.
The soil around the plant should also be discarded.
Suggested Corpuscularia Lehmannii Uses
Corpuscularia lehmannii is compact and rarely exceeds 12″ inches in height, making it a good choice for a succulent garden.
The striking display of leaves also looks great on its own in a small pot.