Monday, May 06, 2002

Icy Reception

According to this article in the L.A. Times, the Iceplant (Carpobrotus edulis, Hottentot fig) is getting a bit more attention in California, which is already dealing with huge problems caused by invasive plants like Scotch Broom (Cytisus scoparius) and Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum). Iceplants in California have been found to displace native species (some of them rare or endangered) that provide habitat and food sources for native animals and insects (sometimes endangered themselves). Because the Iceplant, native to South Africa, is only a problem in certain coastal habitats, and is already so widespread, there has been resistance from the nursery industry against banning its sale as an ornamental.

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