This is a very beautiful plant and a real joy to see in any
stemless succulent with at least 2-3 pairs of stone shaped leaves (more
in cultivation), with 1 to 3 branches (rarely forms clumps)
Leaves: Rounded-triangular, as thick as wide, keel and margins hard and
prominent, usually greys white or pinkish at the base with rest of leaf paler.
the internodes are short with the subsequent leaves touching and
supporting one another at their bases resulting in compact heads.
Flowers: Solitary 5cm wide in the autumn, with up to 100
golden yellow petals later white at base, 300-500 stamens mainly erect
in the centre.
Notes: Lapidaria is a monotypic genus used nowadays to be included in
Aryroderma for the hard greyish leaves, but Lapidaria
differs to the other argyrodermas clearly for the erect ring of stamens.
Plant in winter with unripe
Flowers in late afternoon
Cultivation: This plants are relatively easy to
cultivate in a an open, gritty and well drained soil, but have the
tendency to up and die if the conditions are not right and, sometimes it
seems, even if they are! They need full bright sunlight throughout the
year. They will grow strongly at any time when the weather is warm and
sunny and water is available and are considered opportunistic growers.
They will become dormant in very hot weather, particularly when nights
stay very warm in the hottest couple of months of summer, and should
hardly be watered at this time. Probably best to shade them during the
hottest weather, they will be dormant anyway. They will grow strongly in
autumn and also may grow in spring. They probably won't show much growth
in winter but might if they are in a very sunny position perhaps
indoors. Water during the growing season about once every one-two weeks
(depending on the humidity of the air) like a cactus and then leave it
to drain well and to dry out completely before watering again. If in
doubt, don't water, you are very unlikely to kill it from underwatering.
Anyway do not over-water as they are very greedy drinkers and split
within a day or so if given too much water Although the split of course
disfigures the plant, this is not a major disaster as the following
season, when the old body has shrivelled, the new one appears clean and
unblemished. Be cautious about watering in winter because you may
produce etiolated growth from lack of sun. At
growth resumption when the new buds appear (after the old basal pair
of leaves is totally shrivelled) a little water is given but not too
much. Frost Tolerance -4 ° C for short periods.
Flowers are large yellow in autumn.
Family: Aizoaceae (Mesebrianthemaceae)
Scientific name: Lapidaria margaretae (Schwantes)
Dinter & Schwantes ex N.E.Br.
Cult. Orn. Succ. Herb.1928
Common English Names include: Karoo Rose
Origin: Southern Namibia and Northern Cape (South Africa).
Known from between 5 and 15 sub-populations and locations.
Habitat: Grows sunken (and almost invisible) on
white quartz plains or in
crevices or red sand or on loose stone. Usually in Northeast-facing gentle hill slope in
full Sun or under dwarf shrub in a succulent steppe. Rainfalls approx
250 mm x year. With a wide range of
other dwarf succulents like Lithops sp. and Anacampseros
quinaria; approximately 700-110m.
- Mesebrianthemum margaretae Schwantes 1920
- Argyroderma margaretae (Schwantes)
- Dinteranthus margaretae (Schwantes)
- Argyroderma roeatum N.E.Br. 1922A
These plants tend to resemble, both in shape and colour, the stones and
pebbles of the rocky deserts of their natural homes.
Leaves are Smooth, sculptured, pinkish-grey.
Lapidaria grows a lot like Lithops but with 2-4 leaves pairs with new
leaves emerging at right angles to old. It is believed to be a kind of
ancestral Lithops, or at least a more primitive descendant of an