Cutest Succulents: Living Stones (Lithops)

A touch of character with an element of surprise is what you can expect from living stones. These little succulents known as Lithops plants are small and absolutely adorable. Lithops is both a singular and a plural, so don’t go searching for a Lithop if you want one.

Typically, they grow to about an inch above the surface of the soil. The rest of the plant is underground. They appear unassuming, often split into a cloven shape. In fact, if you do not know what to look for, they will be easy to miss. Living stones have two leaves that are thick and padded. They are the masters of camouflage which is how they have earned their name. Numerous colors, spots, and little stripes can be found on the upper surface of the leaves. There are at least 145 different types to choose from. Their resemblance to stones is uncanny.

These cute succulents originate from South African deserts, where they can easily grow amidst sand and rocks. They do best in areas where the weather is exceptionally hot and needs very little water.

Cutest Succulents Living Stones Lithops
Surprising Item @maceplants

Unique Features of The Living Stones

It would be a challenge for anyone to kill this plant, even if one does not have a green thumb. It all comes down to nutrients and water, which this plant barely requires. Very little is lost from the surface area of this succulent as most of it is underground. Having only two leaves also minimizes the surface area of the plant. In fact, some Lithops can grow and stay alive with fog or mist being the primary source of moisture.

The Lithops have no stem, and the leaves are like storage tanks for the plant. It is the leaves that ensure that the plant can stay without water for months. When experiencing a drought, these plants are able to stay alive by shriveling and shrinking below the soil level. When the succulent seeds, these seeds can remain viable for months since they need minimal moisture.

Cutest Succulents Living Stones Lithops
Unique Characteristics of Living Stones @idrenpeachpoo

Growing Your Cute Succulents

The sandier the soil, the better if you want your Lithops to thrive. These plants are light lovers. Bright sunlight is ideal. Full-on exposure won’t damage them, though a little shade in the afternoon is advised. If you want to keep them indoors, you should make sure they are close to a south-facing window so that they can get the most light. Four to five hours of direct sunlight is what they need each day.

If you start out with your Living Stone succulent indoors, you should not transplant it to grow outdoors later. This is because being indoors makes them lose resistance to bright light. If you move them outdoors, the leaves of these cute succulents will burn, and they will die. During the winter, ensuring that these plants have adequate access to light should be a priority.

Check out this guide on “How to Successfully Grow Indoor Succulents” for a guide on growing your Living Stones indoors.

The most surprising and endearing feature of this plant is its flower. Flowering happens in autumn or in early winter. The flowers are in various colors including pale orange, yellow and white. They resemble daisies, looking like small clusters of perfect bouquets on the ground. The unique feature of these flowers, they are only open in the afternoon when it is sunny and hot. When it gets cooler, towards the late afternoon going into the evening, the flowers close up. With some varieties of these cute succulents, the flowers are scented. They come out from the space between the two leaves.

Once flowering has completed, a new phase of life begins for these succulents. They go through dormancy, where the old leaves are reabsorbed, and new leaves develop. In some cases, a new cluster will appear.

Enjoying learning about the Living Stones succulent? Be sure to also check out “7 Succulent Bouquets You Wish You Knew About” for a look at succulents you can use at your wedding! Check it out!

Cutest Succulents Living Stones Lithops
Grow Your Living Stones @succulents.ireland

Keeping Living Stones

When keeping them, ensuring that the conditions are as close as possible to their natural environment is what you should aim for.

Succulents typically require minimal watering, and only when their soil has dried out. These succulents require even less water. Between the fall and spring, they should not be watered at all as this is when they are dormant. They have a yearly cycle of growth.

This is one succulent that can stay within a family for generations, living up to 50 years if they are grown outdoors in ideal conditions. When indoors, they can be grown in the same pot for up to 20 years.

Thinking of using grow lights for your succulents? Be sure to check out “Are Grow Lights Bad for My Succulents” and see if it’s safe to continue using these lights.

Cutest Succulents Living Stones Lithops
The Natural Surroundings @im.juyoung

Some Interesting Facts On the Living Stones Succulent

Here are a few interesting facts about this plant.

  • When looking to purchase these plants, there are several names they go by. Look for flowering stones, mimicry plants or even pebble plants too.
  • There is a theory that they look like stones to protect themselves from being eaten by grazing animals in the wild.
  • They grow best in groups and surrounded by small pebbles.
  • Roots need room for growth, so pots should be at least five inches deep.
  • These plants are non-toxic, ideal to have around children and pets.
  • It can grow well without any fertilizer.
Cutest Succulents Living Stones Lithops
Lithops @nannileslie

Thank you for reading with us today! Let us know in the comments below which kind of succulents you have laying around the house. Do you have the Living Stones succulent yet?

Loved learning about this succulent and now inspired to add more to your collection?! (We don’t blame you) Check out Succulent City’s new line of ebooks covering topics from, “All the Types of Succulents for Indoor and Outdoor,” “Different Types of Planters,” and many more helpful in-depth ebooks. Head to this link to view our full line of ebooks and get started with our complimentary guide.

Happy Planting! 🌵

What Exactly Is A Crested (Monstrose) Succulent?

Succulents are perhaps the most unique plants to grace the face of the earth. Their extraordinary forms of shapes and differently colored rosettes are quite the spectacle in your garden. All succulents are generally characterized by having fleshy water-filled stems, branches, and leaves that come to their rescue in the drier days. So what makes them Crested Or Montrose?

Besides the overall classifications, we have more specialized types, for example, the cacti that have spikes. And further within the cacti classification, the features get more specific in a widely spread broad spectrum. The breakdown goes on and on in an almost infinitely fashion.

And as if their different hues and weird shapes are not enough, there is a bizarre section of this genus that is Crested and Montrose.

What Exactly Is A Crested Monstrose Succulent
What Makes Them a Monster @cupcakesprinklebottom

Why Do Succulents Become Crested Or Monstrose?

A succulent becomes crested or monstrose as a result of the modification of their cells. These mutations occur when the original mother plant undergoes some change at its growth points where the meristem cells are found. At the apical meristem, a single growing point is adjusted to make multiple growing points.

And on each newly formed growth point, the cells begin to multiply erratically, elongating the growing tip to create a fan. The fan then develops numerous foliage that pushes each other, resulting in an overcrowded unprecedented leaves pattern.

Check out how long your succulents will last you in “How Long Do Succulents Live?“.

Crested succulents are the ones that such a mutation happens on one or two parts of the crop. New cells form from a single point and push the older cells outwards in a nearly radially symmetrical pattern. The resulting mutation growth originates from a line rather than a single location. Cristates look neat and balanced in appearance and structure.

In cases where the crests develop in the plant’s early stages, the crop remains immature and rarely flowers. But when it transpires, later on, they develop functional reproductive anatomy where they flower as scheduled. Crested succulents may have normally growing stems attached to the same plant. It is, therefore, easier to find out the species of that succulent by looking at the usual sections.

Learn more on these succulents by taking a look at “Where Do Most Succulents Come From?“.

What Exactly Is A Crested Monstrose Succulent
Look of Monster @girlwholovesplants

Likely Causes Of These Mutations

Owing to the fact that these modifications are untimed and unpredictable, scientists cannot really pinpoint clear-cut sources. It has become a somewhat perplexing and mind-twisting venture since it develops at any time during the growth cycle of the succulent. The most bewildering part is that it may or may not occur entirely. Therefore the investigation lacks consistency, and that distorts the whole study. But they instead have hunches as to why these modifications happen. Below are some of the likely causes:

Physical Stress

Any physical stress that a succulent may face may be a probable cause of such mutations. These stresses may include ones induced by weather such as extreme heat or coldness, which prompts the cells to adjust to accommodate the change. Other physical stresses may be as a result of prior insect damage, disease injury, and even trimming.

Chemical Trauma

The chemicals used in the manufacture of pesticides, insecticides, and fertilizers are meant to be beneficial, but an ingredient or two may do otherwise. Some of the chemicals are toxic to the plant such that they affect the cells causing them to rearrange themselves, resulting in a variation.

These mutations may be the root cause of the formation of the crested or monstrose plant parts. Chemical trauma, however, does not happen on the first application but instead affect the succulent after being in use over a period of time.

Genetical Modifications

Mutations are a result of an adjustment or change of an organism’s DNA arrangement. A simple adjustment, even in humans, results in drastic unfathomable changes. The thing about these shifts is that they are unpredictable and that they happen spontaneously. These unplanned changes may result in the formation of these two growth types.

Looking to grow your own succulents? Check out our piece on “Summer & Winter Succulents: What’s the Difference?” for tips on options when it comes to choosing the right succulent for the right season.

What Exactly Is A Crested Monstrose Succulent
Genetic Alterations @cloud9_plants

Radiation

The sun’s rays come in different wavelengths, some are valuable, and some are harmful to plants. The useful ones are the ones that aid in the process of photosynthesis. The harmful ones, on the other hand, do just as their name suggests, harm.

The most obvious result of these rays is that they scorch the succulent on the surface. And they may also affect the internal parts of the succulent by causing the cells to either die or readjust themselves. These changes may result in the formation of the Montrose or crested stems or branches.

Nutritional Deficiencies

Succulents, just like all crops, require a set of nutrients to flourish. And a lack of one of these nutrients may result in the mutation of the plant cells. For instance, the lack of zinc has been found to result in the crested form mutation.

Infections

Bacterial, fungal, or viral infections may cause some genetic disturbances that may result in a succulent becomes crested or. A pathogen by the name Phytoplasma has been identified to be the causative agent of cresting in some species.

What Exactly Is A Crested Monstrose Succulent
Take Care of Your Succulent @cemosukulentbahce

As mentioned above, both of these mutations are unpredictable and therefore, may develop in almost all succulent species. But there have been a few varieties that have been widely affected by these mutations.

Thank you for reading! Let us know in the comments below if any of your succulents at home have encountered this phenomenon.

Did this article help answer your succulent-care questions? We sure hope so! If not, no worries. Succulent City is devoted to aiding all succulent lovers, and that’s why we created a line of ebook guides! Check out our in-depth tips on “Essential Tools for Planting the Best Succulents” or even “All the Types of Succulents for Indoor & Outdoor“.

Happy Planting! 🌵

What Is Special About A Cactus?

These thorny succulents that complement any environment always have and up to this day remain a wonder to humans as well as animals in the wild. A hungry creature will eat anything in its path to stay alive, and as such, they are continually looking for food. The ones that have tried extracting the juices from this plant have done it at their own risk. Most of the time, coming out of the ordeal with nothing but painful stabs in their mouths and paws by the sharp spikes the cactus plant has.

The cacti species has been widely researched to find what makes them worthy of having a whole family named in its honor. What sets them apart from most flora is the physical outlook that no other plant on the planet possesses. And in this piece, we shall look into more features that make these succulents unique and widely loved.

What Is Special About A Cactus?
Variety of short cacti in planters @tara_desert

They Grow Anywhere and Everywhere

Contrary to belief, cacti can be grown in almost all climates in the world and not only the desert climate. This is supported by the fact that some species have been found to thrive in the rainforests and colder environments in different parts of the world. Their resilience to the harsh conditions as experienced in the deserts makes them even more popular. Whatever the location they are brought up in, they find ways to survive, thrive, and produce. As long as they have all their nutritional needs met- in the desert or your backyard, they will grow. Cacti are not fussy plants.

Check out “The Rounded Ball Cactus— Parodia Magnifica” for a look at an amazing cactus variety you probably have not seen before.

They Are Nocturnal Plants

Humans are wired differently, and as you will see, plants too. Some people are morning persons, and others aren’t. Others are more productive during the day and others during the night. Animals also behave the same, some hunt at night and others during the day. And the cacti family are loyal members of the night club. The cacti open their stomata during the night as opposed to a majority of plants. If they open the pores during the day, they will lose most of the water they hold within their tissues, and this will mean a shorter life span. They do prefer the night time because the temperatures are cooler, and the calmer breeze helps them retain most of their water storage.

They Are Stem Succulents

Most succulents are characterized by the fact that they have thick leaves as their primary water storage tanks. But this is not the case when it comes to the cactus. To begin with, cacti do not have leaves. They instead have another site to store the water they absorb; otherwise, they wouldn’t be here today. Their swollen stem takes up this role, which explains why they are thick, round, and tight to touch. Some even look like they are almost bursting out. Well, now you know why their stems look that way; they are the plant’s primary water reservoir.

Take a look at our piece “How Often To Water Cactus” and see techniques we came up with to better water your cactus.

Their Unique Growth Habits

Cacti display quite an array of different growing patterns that make them very bizarre. The first growth habit is the arborescent cacti, which grow like a tree with a single trunk topped up by several branches. The second type is the columnar cacti that consist of an erect and cylindrical-shaped stem. The stems may or may not be branched, depending on the species. Smaller versions are the ones that grow in a globular manner. These are the ball-shaped shorter and smaller versions of the columnar cacti. The cactus that grow in this pattern are mostly solitary succulents or may develop several clusters that may be sharing the same root.

Other cacti growing in tropical regions develop as epiphytes, which are plants that grow on other plants deriving their nutrients from the surrounding air. Others emerge as climbers that can grow to enormous sizes. These kinds usually have flattened stems with little or no spines.

What Is Special About A Cactus?
A thick-stemmed and thorny cactus @cappucinoforpt

Unique Physical Cacti Characteristics

Specialized skin surface

The cacti have a waxy, shiny skin that helps them survive the harsh weather conditions in some of their natural habitats. The coating on the skin is ribbed and covers the exterior of most cacti species. The ribs allow the crop to easily stretch without breaking the surface when the plant absorbs water during the rainy season. It gives the cactus the ability to pull when the need arises. The ribs also provide some shade to the plant’s skin. The waxy, shiny texture works towards reducing the rate at which evaporation is taking place.

The spines

Well, the needles are perhaps the most known feature that characterizes a cactus as one. The sharp prickly features are not only for aesthetics but also helps the plant to survive. One of the ways it has done so is by taking the place of leaves when compared to other plants. The reduced number or lack thereof the leaves means the plant has fewer stomata, which consequently means less water loss. Secondly, the spines protect the plant from animals and humans from interfering with it. The needles also help the succulent shed its skin and insulating the crop during the cold, dry weather.

In some cactus, these spines help collect rainwater by directing the droplets towards the plant’s roots. The needles also provide shade to the succulent from the hot glazing sun.

Take a look at the “Taking Care of the Old Lady Cactus” for a look at a cactus with little spines but with interesting features.

What Is Special About A Cactus?
Different cacti species @kaktusyesilii

Specialized root system

Cacti plants have a somewhat different root system as compared to the other flora found growing in harsh conditions. As opposed to having deep roots, they have an extensive, shallow root system that spread widely to all directions and sit right below the surface. Whenever there is a downpour, torrential, or light, the roots absorb the water from the surfaces above them faster and more efficiently. These roots grow exponentially during these wet times, but when it gets drier, they wither and break off from the parent plant to conserve water further.

Their flowers

All cactus species have flowerets that grow at least once in their growth cycle. Some get flowers very early in their infancy and some take months and years to develop. Some even never get to bloom because of the conditions they are exposed to in their habitats. Well, the flowering part is not what makes them unique but how the individual flowers look like. The flowers have both the petals and the sepals combined, and they have numerous stamens around a multi-lobed stigma. The petals are at least ten in number. The flowers bloom in different sizes and colors, all dependent on the species.

Some of these flowers develop into fruits that both humans and animals can eat, although one should take caution, as some of these fruits are poisonous and not safe for consumption.

Be sure to not miss “Why is the Prickly Pear Cactus One of the Most Popular Cacti?” to see this cactus with flower features as well. See why it’s so popular!

Areoles

An areole is a raised structure on the surface of the cactus that the spines originate from. This is the distinguishing trait that only the cactus family possesses. These parts of the plant are circular or oval-shaped; they appear like raised fusion-discs and are fully covered by small hairs or the sharp spikes. Some other plants have spines, but if they do not come from an areola, they are not cacti.

What Is Special About A Cactus?
Potted cacti @nannipereira

The cactus species never ceases to amaze, and if you were to house all the types in your backyard, you would run out of space. The traits mentioned earlier should, with no doubt, convince you that the cacti are a unique and special family of plants. With their exotic-looking features, any setting should be glad to host these wonders of nature.

Thank you for reading! Don’t run out of cactus content! Check out more from the cactus species like “Everything You Need to Know About the Brain Cactus” or “Does the Bunny Cactus Hop?” for more fun cactus facts and info.

If you’d like this read you’re going to love our full in-depth ebooks! With so many of our succulent lovers asking for more, we listened and can’t wait to share it with you here! With our very detailed ebooks, you’ll get more information than these short articles, some ebooks are 30+ pages, perfect for a weekend read.

Happy Planting! 🌵

The Pig’s Ear – Cotyledon orbiculata

Succulents are these plants everyone is scrambling to get isn’t always true. Some are on regulations’ blacklists meaning they have a war being wedged against them.

Pig’s ear is one such succulent.

Make no mistake: it’s still a highly-regarded aesthetic addition amongst plant lovers. But not in New Zealand. It features on the National Pest Plant Accord, meaning it cannot be sold nor commercially propagated.

Maybe sad but it shouldn’t worry you – that’s if you’re not in New Zealand. You can still add the pig’s ear succulent to your collection. Want to know more about it?

Here, have at it.

Cotyledon Orbiculata - the Pig’s Ear
Succulent growing in a planter @elianasucculents

Caring for Pig’s Ear

This succulent has little care demands and can thrive well with minimal attention.

Are you looking to grow the pig’s ear succulent? Then the following care regimen will be particularly essential in raising a healthy plant.

Watering

Remember we’re talking about a succulent here – and thrives in mostly dry conditions in the wild. So the occasional watering will serve the plant just fine.

As a rule, always hold back on giving your pig’s ear a drink until the soil has dried out. This can take anywhere from 1-2 weeks – depends on where you live.

Be thorough with the watering whenever you do it. During your sessions, only stop when the water flows out through the bottom of the container.

Be sure to also check out “What to Do When You Underwater Succulents?” for more tips on watering.

The ideal climate for pig’s ear

C. orbiculata is highly drought resistant. So it’s pretty easy to grow it as an outdoor plant in USDA hardiness zones 9b to 12. These are warm areas for a more significant part.

In colder areas, where temperatures can drop to as low as 30o F, it’s better to grow them indoors. In these areas, you can still grow them outside, but then it must be in containers. You can then bring them inside when the cold starts biting. 

Potting mix

Plant your pig’s ear cactus in soil that drains out fast enough. Remember this is a desert dweller where the land is dry most of the time. And the plant has adapted accordingly to survive this.

So a soggy medium will do more harm than good even when your watering sessions are far in between.

Learn how to make your own succulent soil in “How to Make Your own Succulent Soil at Home

Lighting

This hardy beauty is a sunlight lover. You’ll do it – and yourself – a huge favor by allowing it several hours in the sun per day.

For indoors, place it near a sunlit window. If you’re growing it outdoors, make sure it’s set at a well-lit spot with the possibility of a partial shade sometime during the day; the summer heat can get overwhelming.

Be sure to also read “Are Grow Lights Bad for My Succulents” to see if using grow lights could damage your succulents.

Fertilization

Fertilization should be once every year, and that is in late spring or early summer. Feed your pig’s ear with a water-soluble houseplant fertilizer containing equal parts nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium (10-10-10).

Just dissolve a teaspoonful of the fertilizer in a gallon of water, and you’ll be set.

Apply the fertilizer gently in a ring to avoid splashing it on the leaves.

Pruning

Pruning will mainly entail cutting off shriveled blooms. When left on, they’re going to clamp down on the growth of your plant considerably.

All you need is a pair of sharp scissors. Make sure to cut off as much of the stalk as possible.

Make sure to also read “Why Succulents Grow Tall and What to Do About it” for more on controlling the shape and size of your succulent.

Cotyledon Orbiculata - the Pig’s Ear
Potted succulent placed outdoors @beerded_designs

Repotting pig’s ear

Your plant will need a new and bigger container a few years down the line. You should start making arrangements as soon as it starts to easily tip over.

As usual, the pot shouldn’t be too huge – just enough space for the potting soil and root growth. Typically, an inch wider than the previous one is acceptable.

Repotting this succulent during spring when it’s actively growing.

Cotyledon Orbiculata - the Pig’s Ear
A flowering succulent @flori_fairy

Propagating pig’s ear

Propagation of the pig’s ear is through stem cuttings.

Pick out a tall enough stem – 5 cm and above – with a few nodes on it (even a single one will do). Pluck off the stem and dip it in a rooting hormone (of course with the “injured” part in).

Next up is to prepare a paper towel sheet that you’ll use to wrap the stem. Wet the paper towel using warm water and wring it enough to leave it just damp.

Wrap the towel around your stem and set it up on a plate in a sunny spot. Make a point of changing the sheet often adhering to the above process of preparing another one. Be sure also to leave out the nodes when you wrap your stem.

The stem will be ready for potting in about four weeks – this is the period it’ll take to root.

Pig’s ear pests and problems

Snails and slugs are the most common problems you’ll encounter. These are brought about by under growths and debris.

And they’re easily noticeable by the all-familiar slimy lines they leave behind. Another indicator of their presence is small holes in the leaves of your plant.

In that case, you’ll need to set up snail traps to deal with these slimy beings. Also, make a point of making the area around your plant clear.

Cotyledon Orbiculata - the Pig’s Ear
Potted succulent @moon__and__cacti

More than just an ornamental plant – the medicinal uses of pig’s ear

While it’s widely grown for aesthetics, C. orbiculata is known to alleviate several medical conditions. This is fairly common specifically in South Africa, its native home.

And it’s the leaves that come in handy for this purpose.

First off, they can be chewed as a vermifuge which rids the body of parasitic worms for the individuals with an infestation. Secondly, they are applied to the skin in the case of any conditions such as corns and warts.

The leaves can also sometimes be heated and be used in the process of soothing boils and other swellings.

Finally, juice extracts from the leaves are used to combat epilepsy.

Pig’s ear toxicity

The pig’s ear’s leaves are an asset for us humans, as per the above outlined medicinal uses.

But as a pet owner, the same leaves might turn out to be a nightmare for your pets if you’re not careful. They are harmful to a good deal of pets – dogs, horses, sheep, etc.

So it pays to put measures into place if you want a peaceful co-existence between this succulent and your animal friends.

Cotyledon Orbiculata - the Pig’s Ear
Potted succulent with mulching @vaanyali

With the popularity of succulents, there is no shortage of places to grab this cutie. Think about it: own any succulents? Where did you purchase them?

Popular options for buying your very own plant include Amazon and Etsy. Additionally, you can look into succulent-specific stores like Mountain Crest Gardens, Succulent Gardens, Leaf and Clay, etc.

Thank you for reading! Enjoyed learning about the pig’s ear succulent? If so, you’ll really enjoy our ebook about “Rare Succulents You Wish You Knew About“. With this ebook you’ll find yourself more detailed answers that’ll help your succulent grow even better! With thousands of succulent lovers enjoying our ebooks, you don’t want to miss out on what works the best to grow your succulents.

Happy Planting! 🌵

How to Care for Dudleya Succulents

Have you ever heard of Dudleya succulents?

Well, it may be the first time you are hearing anything about them. The anonymity of this succulent plant genus is due to its small number of species and resemblance to other succulents from another naming.

Dudleya succulents are native to the states to the West of America, and some have their native homes in Mexico. There are between 40-50 species of Dudleya succulents. The dry summers and mild cold winter seasons favor the Dudleya in their native homes.

An exciting nickname for the beautiful flowered dudleya succulents is ‘Liveforever’. True to it, the dudleya plants can live for up to a century. Well, it all depends on how best you care for your dudleya succulents.

Want century-old succulents that you will gift your children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren? Read on to find best practices for rearing the fun-to-see dudleyas.

How to Care for Dudleya Succulents
A native of West America @yamamotohl

Growing a Dudleya Succulent

Dudleya plants do well in warm, dry climates. However, it is not all bad news for chalky succulent lovers living in cold climates. Some species such as the D. cymosa are cold hardy.

Replicating the California climate when growing your succulents is making your succulent thrive with ease.

The Perfect Spot for Growing

Let us make things easy by making it simpler to keep your plants happy.

Optimum growing conditions characterize the perfect growing spot. You should be asking which these conditions are.

Water

Dudleyas are known to be happy in a dry climate. Unlike cacti native to the South American highlands and the Amazon forest, they will require far much lesser watering.

During summer it is advisable to cut down on your watering program considerably. For plants growing on sand, consider slight watering. The reason why no watering is essential during summer is that these plants are dormant over the same period — never mistaken this dormancy with a need for watering.

So when do you water this long-living plant?

Dudleya genus plants grow and bloom through fall. This is the perfect time to fill your watering cans. Water at the base of the plant and be careful enough to avoid the leaves.

How to Care for Dudleya Succulents
Care for Overwatering @addytude

Sunlight

Ever wondered why the ‘LiveLong’ succulents have a chalky appearance?

The plants love rays from the sun and should be left out for as long as the sun shines. The chalky appearance is useful when you overdo the sunshine exposure.

The whitish appearance on the surface of dudleya plants is due to the epicuticular layer of wax, otherwise known as farina. The core function of this layer is protecting the plant from any harm that results from too much sunshine.

Avoid disturbing this layer by touching the plant in any way.

Soils

The perfect soil mix for dudleya succulents is one that drains excessive water in the fastest way possible. Just like any other cactus plant, its roots are shallow. Too much watering weakens the roots. Rotting roots are also common phenomena of too much water. Conversely, dudleyas will require little watering after all.

Be sure to check out “How to Make Your own Succulent Soil at Home” for a guide on making your own soil. What could be better for your succulents?!

Temperature

Think about California and the scorching heat is wholly evident in your mind. To the grower, high temperatures can be an issue but not for a dudleya plant. They thrive in areas where the heat can be as high as what Californians live under.

How to Care for Dudleya Succulents
Temperature Can Be a Problem @onesuccydayatatime

Care for Diseases & Pests

Every living plant is prone to pests and diseases, and the dudleya succulents are no exception either. Ensuring optimal growth conditions is a sure way of providing healthy and vibrant looking plants. For instance, vent from too much watering and always maintaining good air circulation for your succulent friend.

If by any chance you notice any attack for your plants, take action immediately to wade off any further damage. Being keen when inspecting your plants is key to being aware of any attack. You will notice a change to the chalky white surface layer or holes on the foliage.

Some of the common pests that attack dudleya succulents are aphids, mealybugs, gnats, snails, and slugs.

For more guides to taking care of your succulents, check out “What to do When Succulent Leaves are Splitting?” or “Why is My Succulent Rotting?“.

Some Interesting Facts for Dudleya Succulents

Here are some interesting facts that every dudleya succulent owner needs to know.

  • Dudleya species are either branching or non-branching. The ground-spreading and low-level plants are termed as branching while those that only realize single rosettes are unbranching.
  • During summer seasons when no watering is done, the succulents may wilt but will regain the energetic plump look when watering resumes.
  • The dudleya species that flower are an excellent attraction for hummingbirds
How to Care for Dudleya Succulents
Some Facts About Dudleya Succulents @popon.purun

As days go by, dudleya succulents are becoming rare to find. You can only see a handful of them out in the wild. Some of these plants are now protected by the law with punitive measures for smugglers. If you happen to have one, breed it carefully as it can last a century.

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Happy planting! 🌵

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