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Lithops hookeri v. lutea C038
TL: 5 km NE of Groblershoop, South Africa
CACTUSPEDIA       

 


This population has a nice rich orange-red coloration. Flowers are Yellow in late summer.
 

Description: Lithops hookeri is a medium to very large species, up to 46 X 35 mm, usually about 30 X 23 mm. with up to 10 or more heads (mostly 2-4)
Bodies (paired leaves): Obconical, truncate, top surface flat to slightly convex. The face is elliptical more or less equal. The fissure is shallow 3-7 mm, the lobes are conjunct.  This species is characterized by an obscure network of simple and forked groves and lines, and numerous irregular small island enclosed by groves. Margins are irregularly incise with narrow lines tapering out of the grows. This species is quite variable and the colours and face pattern varies considerably in plant from different provenance.

Lithops hookeri comprises several more or less intergrading and distinct variety:

  • var. hookeri (Berg.) Schwant. (1908) Cole numbers: C110, C112, C113, C114, C118, C142B, C340 (Vermiculate form) C023, C051, C335, C336T
    Usually without windows and with rare dusky dots, but with an obscure network of simple and forked groves and lines, and numerous irregular small island enclosed by groves. Margins are irregularly incise with narrow lines tapering out of the grows. The colour of the margins and face island comprises opaque brown or buff or greyish, reddish, pinkish or orange-brown. Channels and grooves are opaque or very obscurely transluscent greenish brown or grey, greyish or brownish green, orange or reddish brown or red. Lines dull dark red. Shoulders as for the face dull grey.

  • var. dabneri (L. Bol.) D.T. Cole (1965) Cole numbers C013, C085, C301
    Differs from type for a relatively frequent presence of shadowy, obscurely translucent windows. Shoulders, margins and island opaque grey or bluish, pinkish, or brownish grey or greyish brown, often slightly more intensely coloured around the margins, Channels various shades of obscurely transluscent slate-grey, dark bluish or greenish grey or greyish or brownish green. Lines dull dark red.
    Dusky dots dull dark greyish green.

  • var. elephina (D.T. Cole) D.T. Cole (1970) Cole numbers C092, C093
    Differs from type for the wider and shallower channel and for the generally absence of rubrication.
    Margins and islands opaque grey tinged, pale pink or brown. Channels obscurely translucent greyish green, grey or greenish grey. Rubrications (if present) very obscure dull red. Shoulders opaque grey to brown.

  • var. lutea (H.W. de Boer) D.T. Cole (1964) Cole number C038
    Quite the same as var. hookeri with large island and coarse network of grooves. The margins, shoulders and islands varies from opaque beige tinged with with pink, brown, yellow or orange. Channels various shades of opaque or very obscurely transluscent orange-brown, orange-red, brown, red-brown or greenish grey. Rubrications blood-red.
    Dusky dots dull dark greyish green.

  • var. marginata (G.C. Nel) D.T. Cole (1946) Cole numbers C035, C137, C338; (Cerise form) C088; (Red-brown form) C053, C089, C154, C155, C337
    This is more variable varieti for face colours with a tendency to wider channels and more open windows. Shoulders, face margins and islands, opaque yellowish, greenish, pinkish or brownish grey, yellow or pink beige, reddish grey, the margins often obscurely banded with more intense colour. Windows and channels various shades of obscurely transluscent greyish or brownish green, greenish brown, greyish red or dark grey. Rubrications bright to dull dark red, orange-red.
    Dusky dots dull dark greyish green.

  • var. subfenestrata (H.W. de Boer) D.T. Cole (1964) Cole numbers C021, C156, C175; (brunneoviolacea) C019
    Distingushed for having obscurely transluscent windows with very shallow channels, obscure islands, dark brownish slate colour and polished appearance. Shoulders, face margins and islands various shades of opaque brownish grey, buff or greyish, yellowish, greenish or pinkish brown; the margins often suffused with a band of more intense colour. Windows and channels various shades of obscurely transluscent dark brownish slate, brownish green.

  • var. susannae (D.T. Cole) D.T. Cole (1970) Cole number C091
    This is the less reticulate form and also the smaller in smaller size. Shoulders, face margins and islands various shades of opaque cream or pale grey, often tinged with yellow, green, pink or pale brown, the margins occasionally banded with more intense colour. Channels various shades of obscurely transluscent greyish green, greenish grey, brown, or orange-brown, sometimes more intensely coloured in the margins. Rubrications obscure dull red.

Cultivars:

  • Lithops hookeri cv' Envy' The plant is yellowish-green in colour, but is otherwise the same as var. hookeri.

  • Lithops hookeri var. marginata cv'Shimada's Apricot' It differs from var. marginata in its pinkish apricot colour.

Bibliography:

  • COLE, DESMOND T. and NAUREEN A., (2005) Lithops Flowering Stones, Cactus&Co. Libri.


Lithops hookeri v. lutea C038

Lithops hookeri v. lutea C038

Lithops hookeri v. lutea C038

Lithops hookeri v. lutea C038


Photo of conspecific taxa, varieties, forms and cultivars of
Lithops hookerii

Family: Mesebrianthemaceae (Aizoaceae)

Scientific name: Lithops hookeri v. lutea (H.W. de Boer) D.T. Cole 1964 - Field number C038 - Locality TL: 5 km NE of Groblershoop, South Africa

Origin South Africa, Cape province. Endemic of a  a very small area to the North  and East of Groblershoop, thus to the North of the range of var. hookeri.
Typical locality:  The typical locality (TL) is 'Groblershoop on the Orange River' (C038).

Habitat: Grows in stonily soils prevalently  formed by sheared micaceous quartzite. Colours of the stony background grey-white, pink, brown .

Etymology: From Latin "Luteus" meaning "golden, saffron, orange-yellow"  for pale orange colour of the plant.

Synonyms

  • Lithops turbiniformis var. lutea De Boer

Common English Names include: Stone plant,  Living stone.
 


 
 



Remarks: Lithops are partly subterranean, with only the clear 'window' in each leaf tip exposed above soil. A type of optical system exists whereby a layer of apical tissue rich in calcium oxalate crystals acts as a filter to intense sunlight before it reaches the thin chlorophyllous layer below. They are also called mimicry plants as they show a striking similarity to their background rocks and are difficult to detect when not in flower. These are the commonly known as pebble plants or living stones; each species is associated with one particular type of rock formation and occurs nowhere else. Its soil-embedded, subterranean growth form also reduces the need for chemical defences against herbivores.
Cultivation:
Need an open mineral, fast draining mix and the maximum amount of light you are able to give them. The basic cultivation routine is: Stop watering after flowering. Start watering after the old leaves completely dry. (Usually late March or Early April) Water freely during the growing season, soak the compost fully but allow it to dry out between waterings
, no water when cold. Some growers fertilize frequently, some hardly ever. Keep them dry during the winter. Nearly all problems occur as a result of overwatering and poor ventilation especially when weather conditions are dull and cool or very humid. This plant is best for a well lit area (Bright shade to full sun). But don't be afraid even the best growers have plants that mysteriously dry up, or leave during the night.
Note:
After flowering in the autumn and extending through winter season the plant doesn’t need watering, but they will still be growing, the new bodies will be increasing in size extracting water from the outer succulent leaves, allowing them to shrivel away.  In fact the plant in this time extracts water and nutrient stored in the outer succulent leaves, allowing them to dehydrate relocating the water  to the rest of the plant and to the new leaves that form during this period until the old leaves are reduced to nothing more than "thin papery shells".


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Photo gallery LITHOPS



 

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