Growing from seed is quite straightforward. The only attribute required is an element of
patience as it is a fairly slow process
This is probably one of the most discussed topics amongst lithops growers as it is
open to a degree of experimentation. Initially, though, a method is needed that will
produce some success. The following instructions work well for this author.
Please note that these instructions are for the UK and similar latitudes. As the
amount of available daylight and warmth is a consideration some modifications may
be appropriate elsewhere.
The first requirement is a thermostatically controlled propagator which can be set to 70F
which is the required temperature.
Place the propagator in a position where it will be exposed to the maximum available
daylight. The end of January to March is the recommended time to start things going.
Assuming that your first forays into seed propagation won't be too ambitious some 2"
pots will be required. Each pot will be adequate for about 20 seeds.
First prepare the growing medium which needs to be fairly fine (1-2mm). A sieved
propriety cactus compost or John Innes should be satisfactory. The addition of some fine
sand is recommended to keep the compost open.
Fill each pot leaving about 6mm between the top of the compost and the top of the pot.
This is to allow a small square of glass or clear plastic to rest on top of the pot as an aid
to maintaining humidity during germination.
An easy way to sow the seed is to use a small container such as an empty 35mm film
holder. Put a pinch of fine sand into the container then mix the seed into the sand and
sprinkle the mixture over the compost.
Stand the pots in water until the surface of the compost is thoroughly sodden then place
in the propagator with each pot covered with the piece of glass.
Germination with some varieties can start as early as 2 days whereas others may keep
you waiting 3 weeks or more.
When germination appears to be complete remove the piece of covering glass to allow
some fresh air to the seedlings but do not remove them from the propagator at this stage
as they still need some warmth and there is always a chance that some seeds may be
late germinating.
For the first month or so after the seeds have germinated keep the pots damp misting the
seedlings daily. As the daylight lengthens and the seedlings become stronger allow the
pots to dry out more between waterings. Once the air temperature has become warmer
the propagator can be dispensed with and the young seedlings treated more as for adult
plants.
At about 6 months the seedlings should be robust enough to handle and ready to prick-out
into larger pots or trays. When carrying this out make sure that the pots have become
thoroughly dry so as to minimise any root damage.
After transplanting them don't start watering again for at least a week. This is to give the
roots a chance to settle after being disturbed.
During their first winter continue watering into December then let them rest before
re-commencing in April.
If all has gone well your reward should be some strong, healthy lithops by the following winter.

These instructions are fairly rudimentary and by no means definitive but hopefully they
will be a good foundation to which you can add your own refinements.
GROWING LITHOPS FROM SEED
BACK