There are a few plants carry the common name of "ice plant," but Delosperma cooperi is a warm-weather perennial with intense red-purple flowers. It is often used as a spreading ground cover in sunny areas, where it flowers virtually all summer long.
A sizeable range of closely related Delosperma species is also available, offering flowers in colors including yellow, orange, scarlet, pink, magenta, and bi-colors. The name "ice plant" derives from tiny hairs on the plant that reflect light in a manner that resembles ice crystals. The foliage is fleshy and succulent-like and morphs into a darker color as fall temperatures drop. In the southern part of its range, it may be evergreen. Individual plants often spread as much as 24 inches, although some instances of 3 or even 4 feet across are reported. It is used most often in sunny but sheltered desert gardens, rock gardens, or slopes or as a ground cover or edging plant. This plant can be invasive in some areas, so caution should be used when planting it.