Carpobrotus edulis – Hottentot Fig

P1020933Just to prove the maxim “right plant, right place” this Carpobrotus edulis is thriving on the North Devon dunes.  The Hottentot Fig’s ability to grow in places that would appear inhospitable to the majority of sensible flora has allowed it to become invasive in places as far reaching as New Zealand and the Mediterranean.  It was introduced to these innocent lands by us clever folk to do what it does so well, stablilising soils.  It didn’t take long for us to switch allegiance and chastised the “thug” for getting a little over exuberant.  Another case of man not being quite so smart has he thought he was.  Notwithstanding I am still impressed by its success, in the same way that you would a cunning diamond hoist or an adept pickpocket.  Still the lemon flowers gave my heart a zing and its tolerance to these seemingly sterile conditions, my admiration.  It is after all only doing what everyone is trying to do, survive, and in doing that it achieves what we often fail to do, look pretty.


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