Elands sour fig

Elands sour fig

Carpobrotus acinaciformis

Scientific name

A very useful ground-hugging succulent with sabre-like leaves and a bright purple flower that is a great ground cover and supports many insect species.

It is cultivated as a succulent lawn-like ground cover and for its edible fruit that can be made into a jam.

Different Carpobrotus species may have been used interchangeably for medicinal purposes in the past. Fresh leaf juice and prepared fruit are used as a mouthwash, gargle, lotion and antiseptic wash. A preparation of the leaves was eaten to treat pulmonary infections. Leaf juice is applied to sores or burns and to stop bleeding. A juice from the leaves was used to treat dysentery. Preparations of both leaf and fruit are used for heat conditions.

Propagation instructions

By cutting

Cuttings are easiest and can take without pre-rooting most of the year. Cut a 15cm section and remove the bottom pairs of leaves and insert into the ground.

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Image credit: Peter A. Mansfeld

Can you help grow this species?

We are in need of this species! Can you help? Maybe you have this species at home, or perhaps you can collect seeds or cuttings (if applicable) from friends or from a public space. If so, why don't you help establish this species in areas where it is much needed!

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Important characteristics

Conservation status: Least Concern

This species was selected because it has various important characteristics.

It provides medicinal value

Carpobrotus acinaciformis is indigenous to: Cape Flats Sand Fynbos

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