Wednesday 27 February 2019

A Lithop Garden

I am not a gardener nor am I a plant enthusiast but I do love cactus and succulents. They are survivors and thrive on neglect. But one stands above them all.

The lithop.

Lithops (commonly called "flowering stones" or "living stones") are true mimicry plants: their shape, size and colour causes them to resemble small stones in their natural surroundings. The plants blend in among the stones as a means of protection. Grazing animals which would otherwise eat them during periods of drought to obtain moisture usually overlook them. Even experts in the field sometimes have difficulty locating plants for study because of this unusual deceptive camouflage.

They are very hard to find in Canada. I have a couple but very similar, although I saw one sprout last year. Today I found a garden of them.

I was walking by Pistols in First Canadian Place at lunch and there they were. About a half dozen potted gardens of Lithops. This one caught my eye due to the variety of colours and sizes.

When I brought them home I noticed I had really lucked out. This particular rust coloured number with two "petals" was sprouting into what looks like a four petaled growth. Wow!

This pot has joined my small collection on the only protected (from our two cats) window sill in our condo. When summer comes, it'll be moved outside.

Of course as "Rusty" sprouts, I will be updating.

Yes, I love lithops and now I have a small garden of them.

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