Mesembryanthemum nodiflorum

Family: Aizoaceae

Life Form: Annual Herb.    

Habitat: coastal.

 Description: Mesembryanthemum crystallinum and M. nodiflorum are prostrate succulent herbs covered in large bladder cells, giving them a distinctive glistening appearance. Introduced from Europe and Africa, their unique physiology and ability to accumulate salt has enabled them to establish in disturbed and saline areas.

Uses (including ethnobotanical):

The leaves of M. crystallinum are edible. Seeds can also be eaten. The crushed leaves can be used as a soap substitute and has some medicinal uses (Plants For A Future - Species Database, 1997-2003). Mesembryanthemum crystallinum is also used as a model in plant physiologic research (Bohnert and Cushman, 2000), and is grown as a garden ornamental (Jessop, 1986). Due to its salt accumulation, M. crystallinum may be useful for bio-remediation (Bohnert Laboratories, 2003).


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