Pig Face (Carpobrotus glaucescens)

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Pig Face is a hardy, sun loving, creeping succulent with stems to two metres that root at the nodes along the stem. The plant has bright deep pink daisy-like flowers blooming mainly from October to January, which is the main growing period. It will tolerate strong winds, salt spray and sand blow, making it the perfect ground cover for a seaside garden.

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Pig Face can grow thick and spread to over several metres acting as a soil stabiliser on slopes in your garden. It looks good as a rockery plant and, being a succulent, requires little water. It is pest resistant but can be subject to a white fungus in wet humid weather. Remove affected areas. Healthy stems will soon grow back.

To propagate just take a 30cm stem with root nodes along it and place on the ground then cover the roots with soil.

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In dune system Pig Face plays an important role as a pioneer species that stabilises the foredunes so that more complex plants can grow.

 This article is part of our Gardening with natives series.

2 Replies to “Pig Face (Carpobrotus glaucescens)”

    • Hi Kathleen,
      In my experience, Pigface tends to get woody in the dry season so it could be lack of water or perhaps the plant is getting old. The best thing to do would be to cut the new growth section of the plant with a little of the woody stem and replant it. As I noted on the website, Pigface is very easy to propagate. (In sandy soils. It may not do as well in clay soil.) I tend to regard it as a ‘semi-annual’. Because I don’t water in the dry season it dies back in the winter then becomes thick and covered in flowers with rain and warmth. In order to keep an area looking thick rather than spindly, I just keep taking cuttings and planting. if it gets too thick, it’s easy to cut back.
      Hope this helps.
      Judy

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