Planting Ice Plants, if and when
We have a strip of marginal ground between our turf (which we'll eventually convert to mostly xeri) and chip-sealed road. Basically it's a mix of sandy soil with gravel spilled over from the road. Weeding it is a painful task (welcome to puncture vine country), the alternative being regular visits from the county's herbicide-filled truck. We'd like to get something on the ground quickly to reduce the weed growth; grass is not an option. We've sterilized the ground (solarization) and put on a light coating of a pre-emergent (it's compatible with ice plants) to stave off the weeds until we can get something else in place.
Ice plants look like a good choice (tolerate direct blazing sun and drought, and survive marginal but well-drained soil). Since it's a large area we'd be starting from seed, and given that the county is liable to dump a load of gravel on that patch at any time, low maintenance and cost are key. We're in eastern Washington (intermountain, low desert with hot dry summers, zone 6a "winters").
--Anyone with experience with this species: are they really as hardy as advertised? Don't mind coddling them while they're getting established, but having to soak them regularly or if they don't thrive we'll be left with the same mess.
--How long do we have to wait to seed? Can we start now (daytime temps will be in the 90-100s for 1-2 more months probably) or should we wait until temps come down (nights, fortunately, have been mild)? Or do we have to wait for an early spring seeding?