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Perennial candytuft (Iberis sempervirens)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Brassicales
Family: Brassicaceae
Genus: Iberis

~50; see text

Iberis /ˈbɪərɪs/,[1] commonly called candytuft, is a genus of flowering plants belonging to the family Brassicaceae. It comprises annuals, evergreen perennials and subshrubs native to the Old World.[2] The name "candytuft" is not related to candy, but derives from Candia, the former name of Iraklion on the Island of Crete.[3]

In the language of flowers, the candytuft symbolizes indifference.[4]


Iberis consists of about 50 species of annuals, perennials and evergreen subshrubs. Some of the better known are:

Iberis amara - rocket candytuft, bitter candytuft, wild candytuft
Iberis ciliata
Iberis gibraltarica - Gibraltar candytuft
Iberis linifolia
Iberis procumbens - dune candytuft
Iberis sempervirens - evergreen candytuft, perennial candytuft
Iberis umbellata - globe candytuft

They are used as ornamental plants for rock gardens, bedding, and borders in full sun or light shade. Candytuft is a cold hardy, fast-growing annual with lance shaped green leaves. It reaches a height of about 12 in (30 cm) with a spread of about 6 in (15 cm).

Trophic connections[edit]

These plants provide nourishment for a number of insect species of which the rare Euchloe tagis butterfly is the most striking example as it is monophagous on species in this genus.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Sunset Western Garden Book, 1995:606–607
  2. ^ RHS A-Z encyclopedia of garden plants. United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. 2008. p. 1136. ISBN 1405332964.
  3. ^ Shorter Oxford English dictionary, 6th ed. United Kingdom: Oxford University Press. 2007. p. 3804. ISBN 0199206872.
  4. ^ "Language of Flowers - Flower Meanings, Flower Sentiments". www.languageofflowers.com. Retrieved 2016-11-26.

External links[edit]