Monday, October 25, 2010

Mrs Lithops' change of life

As far as the Mayor of Succulent City, Mrs Lithops, is concerned, I am that dreadful paparazzi man. Every time she looks around, there I am with a camera pointed at her, invading her privacy, mercilessly capturing her at moments of crisis, tragedy and now at that delicate phase known as the change of life.

No woman wants to be photographed when she's not looking her best, and at first glance Mrs Lithops looks so crook that Pam and I actually thought she was headed for heaven. But hooray, we were very much mistaken, even if my camera and I were unwelcome.

Take a peek from the 'helicopter' view and you can see that Mrs Lithops is merely discarding her winter wardrobe and is quite sensibly putting on her summer frock.

The side-on view tells the story. A beautiful young Lithops, the latest thing, is on the way. As it turns out this takes a while to happen. We first noticed Mrs Lithops' seeming 'decline' on October 7, and it's only today, October 25, that the transformation is complete.

This is October 15, and one side of the old overcoat is threadbare and about to become rags.

A few days later and the youngster is just bursting with good health and ready to party, impatient to shrug off its elderly chaperone.

But the wrinkled, withered old party-pooper hung around for another week.

That episode is all behind her now. She's a young, optimistic Lithops looking forward to a hot dry summer, just like the ones back home.

I haven't had the heart to let the kid know she's in humid coastal Sydney, where the downpours are frequent and February a sauna. I'll let the other succulents fill her in on those facts of life.


Lanie said...

I feel like a celebrity-hound for loving the postings of Mrs Lithops. Isn't she incredible? Wouldn't it be nice if we humans could shed our outer wrinkled layer in time for summer?!

Sue O said...

I love how you anthropomorphize Mrs. Lithops. Makes me want one of my own, but I would kill it for sure.

Kris said...

Nice pic progression, there. And throughout your constant invasion of privacy, Mrs Lithops kept her composure and never once acted less than a lady. ;-D

Cwm Goch Chronicles said...

Hi Jamie,
I found your blog through the Don Burke book (as no doubt many of your readers have). Your garden is lovely - very inspiring.
Great blog too - will drop in again.
Thanks for sharing your garden - it's always nice to see what how other people do it.
Kind regards,

Maxabella said...

Jamie, I have a confession to make... I have secretly been reading your blog for ages through the link on Allison's page. I never comment ('cos frankly I have nothing to add when it comes to your wonderful gardening posts) but I am enjoying the learning immensely. Thank you.

It was nice to go back via Al's linky to see the birth of Mrs Lithops and then read where she's at right now. Very. x

Chookie said...

I'm glad Mrs Lithops is well;not surprised you thought she might be in a decline either! Looking forward to her next adventure.

Ngeun said...

Is Mrs Lithops still in the limelight?

Jamie said...


Sadly, no, Ngeun. Mrs Lithops dropped off the peg while we were away for two months in the USA last year. She lived outdoors with the other potted succulents, and some wet weather did her in.

She had a great career here – won plant of the year here at Amateurland in 2010 – but 2011 was her last year on Earth. In case you're interested, I did a few other Mrs Lithops postings.