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Lithops hookeri (Living Stones)

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Scientific Name

Lithops hookeri Schwantes

Common Names

Living Stones

Synonyms

Lithops aurantiaca, Lithops dabneri, Lithops hookeri var. dabneri, Lithops hookeri var. elephina, Lithops hookeri var. lutea, Lithops hookeri var. marginata, Lithops hookeri var. subfenestrata, Lithops hookeri var. susannae, Lithops marginata, Lithops turbiniformis, Lithops turbiniformis var. brunneo-violacea, Lithops turbiniformis var. dabneri, Lithops turbiniformis var. elephina, Lithops turbiniformis var. lutea, Lithops turbiniformis var. marginata, Lithops turbiniformis var. subfenestrata, Lithops turbiniformis var. susannae, Mesembryanthemum hookeri, Mesembryanthemum turbiniforme

Scientific Classification

Family: Aizoaceae
Subfamily: Ruschioideae
Tribe: Ruschieae
Genus: Lithops

Origin

Native to South Africa (Northern Cape).

Description

Lithops hookeri is a small succulent that has a body composed of two fleshy leaves with flat to slightly convex upper surfaces. The bodies are up to 1.8 inches (4.5 cm) tall and up to 1.4 inches (3.5 cm) wide. The leaves come in a wide range of colors, from gray, brown, and red hues to pink and orange. They are also variable when it comes to the reticulated patterning of their upper surfaces. Older plants form clumps of up to 10 ten bodies. Flowers are yellow and appear in fall from the fissure between the leaves.

The specific epithet "hookeri" honors Sir William Jackson Hooker (1785-1865), an English botanist and botanical illustrator who was the first director of the Royal Botanic Gardens.

Lithops hookeri (Living Stones)

Photo by Cactus Art

How to Grow and Care for Lithops hookeri

Light: Lithops have adapted to intense sunlight in the wild, so they require a good amount of direct sunlight when grown indoors.

Soil: These plants thrive best in a growing medium that will drain quickly. Use a commercial succulent soil mix or make your own potting mix.

Hardiness: Lithops hookeri can withstand temperatures as low as 30 to 50 °F (-1.1 to 10 °C), USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b.

Watering: Lithops have a specific yearly cycle of growth, and it is important to water only during certain stages, but it is also important to keep the soil dry at other stages of their growth. Never water Lithops deeply when they are dormant.

Fertilizing: These succulents do not need to be fertilized. Lithops will thrive without any feeding. If you decide to feed, use a fertilizer with high potassium and low nitrogen levels.

Repotting: Lithops will happily stay in the same pot for several decades. The common reason for repotting is to divide the plants or to allow space for clusters to grow.

Propagation: If you have multi-headed plants, Lithops can be propagated by division. They are most often grown from seeds.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Lithops.

Toxicity of Lithops hookeri

Lithops are non-toxic and safe to have around children and pets.

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