Lithops “Living Stones” Complete Plant Care Guide

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One of the craziest looking plants on the market right now are Lithops AKA Living Stones. These plants come from Africa and have quickly become a favorite in the U.S. This plant is so unique and is always a favorite when friends visit my house.

Lithops main care directions.

  1. Water. Water when the plant starts to look thiner and not as hard. If you can squeeze the Lithop and it feels squishy, it’s time to water. I water my Lithops once every 2 weeks or so.
  2. Light. Bright indirect sunlight near a south facing window or under plant grow lights. Can also tolerate direct sunlight.
  3. Fertilizer. Feed Lithops every watering, every other watering, or once a month. If using a high strength fertilizer, make sure to dilute the recipe in half.
  4. Humidity. No special humidity requirements. Thrives in regular household humidity.

Lithops thrive with these plant care tips.


Lithops need bright light in order to keep growing and thriving in your home. This isn’t one of those plants you can shove into a low light corner and expect it to survive.

The most ideal spot for Lithops would be on a south facing windowsill. Lithops can take a few hours of direct sunlight, so you don’t need to worry about creating any kind of sheer barrier between the window and the plant. The second best spot for this plant would be near a east or west facing window.

These plants bloom all the time and as you may know already, plants blooming in the home is not an everyday thing. So if you give it the light the plant desires, you’ll be rewarded with blooms on a regular basis.

If you don’t have sufficient sunlight for this plant, a great option is plant grow lights. I use T5 Barrina plant grow lights and run them on a timer for 13 hours a day. I currently have my Lithops under plant grow lights because I have nowhere else to put them, but I’ve also found that Lithops love being under plant grow lights. They bloom like crazy here.


If you’re away traveling a lot, this is the plant for you. That’s because Lithops only need to be watered once every two+ weeks.

Not sure when to water your Lithops? Here are a few telltale signs that your Lithops need a good drink.

  • Plant looks puckered or shriveled up
  • Plant is very soft or even squishy to the touch

It’s important to wait to water this plant until the soil completely dries out. Even then, you can wait a few days because this is a drought tolerant plant.

If you have trouble knowing when to water, use a moisture meter to check the soil. This handy tool lets you know if the soil is dry, moist, or wet.


Lithops require well-draining soil in order to grow properly. Proper draining soil is crucial here because water will easily flow around the plants roots and any extra water will drain out of the pot.

An easy well-draining potting mix recipe calls for 1/3 orchid bark, 1/3 perlite, and 1/3 coco coir. Mix this together well. This mix should feel light and airy. If the mix feels too dense and compact still, you can add more chunky orchid bark. If the mix feels too light and airy, you can add more coco coir if you’d like.

Another great option is Fox Farm Ocean Forest. This potting mix contains a blend of high quality ingredients perfect for any houseplant.

I’ve never seen this plant grown in leca or lechuza pon, but you could experiment with these substrates.


Lithops thrive in regular household temperatures, although they can tolerate hotter weather up to 100 degrees F.


This is probably the first time you’ll hear me say this, but Lithops don’t really need to be fertilized. This is because in their natural habitat, they are getting very few nutrients.

If you decide you want to fertilize this plant, only do it about once a year and do it with a very diluted fertilizer recipe. You could use a diluted recipe of Dyna-Gro or Liqui-Dirt to feed this plant, but it’s not necessary.


Lithops have no special humidity requirements. This is a plant you can grow in your home without a humidifier or any special humidity needed.


Lithops are propagated via seed or plant division. People typically prefer to propagate via seed because it’s a fun experiment and more straightforward.

To propagate with seed, first mix together well-draining soil and get the mix moist. You can fertilize now if you’d like but it’s totally optional. Sprinkle the seeds into the potting mix. Then you can sprinkle some sand on top of the seeds. The sand or gravel is used to keep more humidity underneath the seed area to help it grow.

Keep the soil moist and in a sunny, warm spot in your home. Ideally you want to keep the containers with the seeds covered in some type of plastic or glass dome. This is to keep the humidity up. When the dome forms droplets, you know there’s humidity and this is great. If you notice there is no droplets, it’s time to mist inside the dome. Give it a really good mist.

These plants are slow growing, but you’ll notice Lithops growing in a few months.

Propagating via plant division is it exactly what it sounds like. When the Lithops grow multiples, you can gently divide the plants and repot them.

Lithops Syngonium Common Questions

Are Lithops rare?

Lithops are not rare plants but they definitely look like it. You can purchase this plant from any big box store and plant shops. I bought my Lithops from a local plant shop.

How much are Lithops?

Lithops range in price depending on how large they are and where you purchase the plant. I bought a large 6 inch pot of Lithops for $35 from a local plant shop. I have seen Lithops in a small 2 inch container at big box stores for less than $7.

How do you care for Lithops?

Caring for Lithops is incredibly easy. You don’t even need to fertilize it. This plant is pretty hands off as long as you put it in a very sunny spot in your home and only water it when the soil completely dries out, or once every 2-3 weeks.

How do I know if my Lithops are healthy?

If your Lithops look full and they continue to grow or even bloom in your home, this is how you know the plant is healthy and thriving in your home.

When should I repot Lithops?

These aren’t the fastest growing houseplant so you won’t have to repot this plant in the first year you get it. Once your plant outgrows the current container it’s in, that’s when it’s time to repot the plant. The best time to repot Lithops is during the active growing season which typically starts between March through May.

Are Lithop easy to care for?

Lithops are some of the easiest plants to care for. I mean, you don’t even need to fertilize this plant nor give it any kind of humidity. As long as you put this plant in a spot getting bright light and water once the soil completely dries out, you’re golden.

Are Lithops fast growers?

Lithops are not particularly fast growers, but give them bright indirect (and even some direct) sunlight and your plant will grow at its maximum speed.

How big do Lithops get?

Lithops don’t get that large – most of them will stay under 1 inch tall and under 3 inches wide.

Can Lithops take full sun?

Lithops can grow in bright indirect sunlight, but also manage direct sunlight quite well. You may even notice quicker growth and blooms by giving it this kind of sunlight. Wherever you decide to put your plant, make sure it’s getting sufficient lighting.

How do I make Lithops larger?

Encourage your Lithops to grow larger by giving it enough sunlight. You may even want to consider giving this plant direct sunlight on a south facing windowsill.

Fertilize your plant to encourage healthy new growth. Feed an all purpose fertilizer like Dyna-Gro during the active growing season which is typically March through October. Plants typically stop growing in the winter season and do not need fertilizer during this time.

How do you propagate Lithops?

You can propagate Lithops via seed or by splitting apart a multi-headed plant.

Can you put Lithop cuttings directly into soil?

Yes, you can put Lithop cuttings directly into soil without having to do much at all. Just make sure the soil you’re planting it in is well-draining and has proper air flow.

Are Lithops toxic to pets?

No, this plant is not toxic to pets.  You can get more information on toxic and pet-friendly plants at ASPCA here.

Common pests

Some of the most common pests for this plant include spider mites, mealybugs, scale, and aphids. These pests can hurt your plant which is why prevention is key.

To help prevent any pest infestations on your plant, here’s what to do.

  • If possible, inspect your plant before purchasing at the plant store. If you’re buying a plant online, inspect your plant away from your other plants.
  • Regularly check your plants for pests. This is also a great time to clean your plants.
  • Cut off dead leaves.

If you find a plant that has pests on it, quarantine the plant away from your houseplants and clean the plant with an organic or nonorganic insecticide. I use Bonide Systemic on my plants as a preventative and Captain Jacks to kill pests. I spray the plant and wipe down the leaves and stems twice a week for a month until I know the infestation is gone. Make sure to check all of your other plants as it is easy for pests to spread.

Common issues

You won’t run into many problems with Lithops, however, spidermites tend to love these plants. I haven’t had this problem but it’s good to know.

Spidermites love dry environments and tend to hide between the opening between Lithops. You’ll know if you have spidermites if you start to see small pale spots on the leaves.

How do you get rid of spidermites? Use a blend of 1 cup alcohol and 30 ounces water into a spray bottle. Spray the entire plant and soil and wipe it down with a clean paper towel.

Keep a close eye on the plant and quarantine it away from the non-infected plants. Likely, your other plants are infected with spidermites because they spread easily, so use this mixture of alcohol and water on all of your nearby plants.

Key Points To Remember

If you’re looking for a weird plant that make people do a double take, get a Lithops. This plant is so easy to take care of and continues to put out new blooms all the time.

Lithops main things to remember.

  1. Water. Water when the plant starts to look thiner and not as hard. If you can squeeze the Lithop and it feels squishy, it’s time to water. I water my Lithops once every 2 weeks or so.
  2. Light. Bright indirect sunlight near a south facing window or under plant grow lights.
  3. Fertilizer. Feed Lithops every watering, every other watering, or once a month. If using a high strength fertilizer, make sure to dilute the recipe in half.
  4. Humidity. No special humidity requirements. Thrives in regular household humidity.

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