Flower and leaves. Photo: Sophy, South Africa

Flower buds, flower, and leaves. Photo: Sophy, South Africa

Leaves and spent flowers. Photo: Sophy, South Africa

Old fruiting bodies. Photo: Sophy, South Africa

Common Name





Introduced annual or biennial woody forb or shrub to 1m tall, central stem becoming woody. Leaves succulent, with a slightly unpleasant scent, opposite each other, stem clasping, 1.3-15.5cm long, 5-55mm wide, folded lengthwise, with prominent warts, the margins prominently wavy, with pointed tips. Leaves below the flowers 1.3-3.8cm long, 5-15mm wide, flat, decreasing in size up the stems. Flowers with a slightly sweet musty scent, with about 180-220 white 'petals', solitary at the ends of the stems. Immature fruit fleshy, red, prominently warty, maturing to a dry fruiting body. Recorded from Gol Gol. A large infestation in Victoria.

Differs from Mesembryanthum crystallinum in that it has an erect central stem, the flowers are 40-70mm in diameter, occasionally as small as 15mm, and the flowers have about 180-200 'petals'.

Description of Australian specimens: Chinnock, R.J., Stajsic, V. & Brodie, C.J., (2012) Mesembryanthemum guerichianum Pax (Aizoaceae): a weedy alien species new to Australia. Plant Protection Quarterly 27(2): 84-85, Figs 1-6