Little lithrops

Freshly planted lithrops
Freshly planted lithrops

Unfortunately none of the lithrops seeds I bought sprouted, so I thought I’d try again with small plants I bought off of Etsy from angelSucculents. They came quickly and nicely wrapped, and the young lithrops are firm with a nice variety of colors.

Lithops (stone face, living stone) is a south African native of the Aizoaceae (ice plant) family. They resemble pebbles and can be easy to miss if not actively looked for.

Lithops have particular watering requirements, and are prone to dying from overwatering. According to a variety of gardeners with more experience with them than I do (this is my first attempt) they have a growth period in the spring (water), may go into a summer dormancy (don’t water), flower in the fall (water) and then use the reserves in their oldest leaves to make it through the winter (don’t water).

I’ve been wanting to try lithops for a while now, I think they are an unusual and interesting plant. I’m not sure the window I have them in gets enough light to keep them happy, but time will tell.

Sempervivum sprouts
Six month old sempervivum sprouts

While I didn’t have fantastic luck with the succulent seeds I planted about a half a year ago, at least some of the sempervivum sprouted. Not sure if the others didn’t sprout due to the seeds or due to user error, but the sempervivums are the only ones that have made it this far.

Succulent Seed Starting

Succulents aren’t my specialty but I thought I’d give succulent seed starting a try. Over the years I’ve grown some, and I recently bought a couple of echeveria plants. I ordered seeds from three different vendors, and so far the seeds have arrived from and

For a starting mix I used a mixture of perlite, lava rock, and brightly colored aquarium stones.

The seeds from arrived promptly and well marked.

Pot 1

Echeveria seeds

If you look closely, you may be able to see the tiny seeds in the bag. Echeveria are at least supposed to be (from what I’ve read) a pretty easy plant to deal well with. The two echeveria I have are a Miranda and an Arctic Ice. Hopefully if the seeds are a bust then I’ll be able to propagate those via leaf cuttings.

Pot 2

Lithops seeds

Lithops are cool, they are pebble looking plants that have a reputation for being finicky or at least demanding of a particular watering schedule. Known to be prone to overwatering.

Pot 3

Argyroderma seeds

Argyrodermas are similar to Lithops, but are apparently slightly more tolerant of moisture. They aren’t as unusual looking as lithops but still cute. Sometimes compared to looking like a human bottom.

Pot 4

Sempervivum seeds

Sempervivums are similar to echeveria, but flower from the center rosette which dies after flowering. These seeds are from My order was fulfilled quickly and without incident. I planted all 1,000 seeds in the same pot, in hopes at least some sprout.

I also ordered some seeds from another vendor, but they have not yet arrived.

The pots fit into a standard 1020 tray (I prefer the double or quad thick versions if available). They are covered with a clear plastic dome, and will be checked for moisture daily. Current lighting an LED fixture. I am curious to see how many (if any) sprout from the different pots.