Lambs tongue is a succulent plant variety from the ice plant family that is native to areas in South Africa. The plant grows to a height under 12 inches with convex-shaped leaves and produces yellow flower blooms in the summer that open in the late afternoon. This plant is hardy in USDA growing zones 10 and 11 and is winter hardy to a temperature of 20 degrees F. The lambs tongue plant is drought resistant and will grow well in garden beds, xeriscape low-moisture gardens and rock gardens.
Plant lambs tongue in a location that offers a sandy loam soil and full sunlight. Test the soil pH prior to planting as lambs tongue prefers a slightly acidic soil with a pH of 5.5 to 6.5. Add ground rock sulfur to lower the pH if needed.
Water the plant during the summer growing season when the weekly rainfall amounts are less than one inch and the soil is dry 1 to 2 inches below the surface. Lambs tongue is drought resistant but prefers supplemental watering during the dry summer months.
Fertilize lambs tongue by applying a quick release fertilizer every two weeks during the summer growing season. Choose a water soluble fertilizer that can be applied at the time of watering.
Apply a 2 to 3 inch layer of mulch around the plants to assist with moisture retention. Rock mulch can be placed around the plant in a rock garden or xeriscape as long as a 1 to 2 inch gap is left around the stem of the plant.
Propagate lambs tongue by dividing the root ball into several sections. Plant the divided sections into the ground and water generously. Lambs tongue seeds can be collected and used for propagation. Collect the pods once they are dry on the plant but before they break open.
Things You Will Need
- Soil pH test
- Ground rock sulfur
- Quick release fertilizer
- Planting container
- Well draining potting soil
- Lambs tongue can be planted in a container. Use a well draining potting soil and a container that has bottom drainage holes to prevent pooling of water around the roots.