Tracking down the correct name for this recently-hybridized ice plant cultivar was a bit of a pain. For a brief period of time, it appeared in some nursery catalogues (on-line, at the least) as Delosperma ‘Pink Ribbon’. However, it has recently been plant patented in the USA as Delosperma ‘Jewel of Desert Garnet’ (filed Sept. 9, 2011, approved March 12, 2013) and similarly approved under that name in the EU with Community Plant Variety Rights. In botanical nomenclature, there is a principle of priority where the first validly published name is the one that should be retained. In the International Code of Nomenclature for Cultivated Plants (PDF), however, Principle 5 states that names established under Plant Breeders’ Rights (presumably including US Plant Patents) take precedence over names formed under the provisions of the Code. So, what some know as Delosperma ‘Pink Ribbon’ has now changed its name. To make matters somewhat more confusing, it also appears to me that the rights managers are trying to treat “Jewel of Desert” as a trademark, and using ‘Garnet’ to identify this entity instead of its full cultivar name. I know people complain about scientific names changing, but horticultural names can be far more frustrating (for examples, see Tony Avent’s column: The Misuse of Trademarks in Horticulture).
Jewel of Desert Garnet ice plant was developed by Japanese-born plant breeder Koichiro Nishikawa. To give you an idea of how much he believed in what he was developing with this cultivar and other similar ones, he moved from Japan to Ecuador in order to decrease the interval between generations. Dedication!
Considered to be hardy to USDA Zone 7, Delosperma ‘Jewel of Desert Garnet’ is (from the plant patent) “characterized by its compact plant habit, its very floriferous and long blooming flowering habit, its high heat tolerance, and its flowers that are red-orange with pink centers and yellow anthers”. Sylvain Burgaud’s photograph shows the plant in habit.
Today’s photograph was taken last year at the Trial Gardens at the University of Georgia in Athens.