Lithops olivacea L.Bolus
Green Stone Plant, Olive-green Living Stone
Lithops olivacea var. nebrownii
Lithops olivacea is a small succulent with bodies of two opposite partly fused leaves. It forms large clumps of up to 30 bodies with time. The bodies grow up to 4 inches (10 cm) tall and up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) wide. Leaves are thick, fleshy, with grey sides sometimes tinged greenish-yellow or purplish and olive-green or greyish-green window with few paler or usually completely absent dots. Flowers are yellow with a white center, up to 1.6 inches (4 cm) in diameter, and appear from the fissure between the leaves in late summer and early fall.
The specific epithet "olivacea" is the feminine form of the Latin adjective "olivaceus," meaning "olive-green." It refers to the olive-green window at the top of the leaves.
How to Grow and Care for Lithops olivacea
Light: A sunny windowsill where the plant receives 4 to 5 hours of direct sunlight during the early part of the day and partial shade during the afternoon is the perfect spot to grow your L. olivacea. You may place the pot on the balcony or in the garden from spring to fall.
Soil: L. olivacea thrives best in a growing medium that will drain quickly. Use a commercial soil mix for succulents or make your own potting mix.
Hardiness: High temperatures are not a problem for this plant as long as there is plenty of fresh air, but it is not a cold-hardy succulent. L. olivacea can withstand temperatures as low as 30 to 50 °F (-1.1 to 10 °C), USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b.
Watering: Like all Lithops, this succulent has 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 its growth. How often you need to water your L. olivacea depends on how quickly the potting mix dries out. It is essential to let the soil dry out between waterings. Stop watering during the winter months to allow the old leaf pair to dry out and the new pair to develop.
Fertilizing: L. olivacea does not need to be fertilized. It will thrive without any feeding. If you decide to feed, use a fertilizer with high potassium and low nitrogen levels.
Repotting: This small succulent will happily stay in the same pot for several decades. The common reason for repotting is to divide the plant or to allow space for clusters to grow. Repot only when its growing season starts.
Propagation: L. olivacea is most often grown from seeds. If you have a multi-headed plant, it can also be propagated by division. Sow the seeds during the summer.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Lithops.
Toxicity of Lithops olivacea
L. olivacea is non-toxic and safe to have around children and pets.
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