Lithops helmutii L. Bol (1933)





Origin:


Collected by Pastor G. Meyer in June 1932, and named for his son Helmut, who was also an enthusiastic succulent collector and subsequently became Curator at the Stellenbosch University Gardens.

Distribution:


RSA: CP, in a very small area near to the N and NE of Steinkopf. TL 'Namaqualand: between Steinkopf and Arribies' (C271).
Stone: Transluscent white, red-stained and brownish quartzite.

Description:


Distinguished by its usually divergent lobes, humped top surfaces and rather glassy greenish and greyish colours.
Profile usually cordate, sometimes tending to bicuneate; top surface convex, usually distinctly humped, often lopsided with one side of the face slightly lower than the other; fissure fairly deep, 10-15 mm; lobes usually somewhat divergent.
Face flush to somewhat elevated; mostly ± elongated elliptic; lobes mostly ± equal; opaque + transluscent; smooth.
Margins distinct slender lines, usually irregularly dentate with small peninsulas; inner margins often extending downwards into fine points along the edges of the fissures.
Windows usually ± occluded, occasionally ± completely open.
Channels broad to narrow, irregular.
Islands few to many, small to large, irregular, sometimes ± distinct, usually reduced to indistinct mottling or flecks.
Rubrications absent.
Dusky dots not visible.
Colours: Margins and islands various shades of cream, tinged with yellow, pink or green, the margins sometimes slightly more intensely coloured. Windows and channels various shades of transluscent pale grey, greyish green, greenish grey, or pinkish or brownish green or grey, often presenting a rather glassy appearance. Shoulders as for the margins, or greyer and duller. Inner faces of fissures as for the shoulders.
Size: Small to medium, facial diameters up to 30 X 19 mm, mostly about 23-15 mm. Number of heads up to 26 or more, mostly 2-6.

Flowers:


Yellow with white centre, medium, up to 33 mm Ø, mostly 25-30 mm Ø
Seed capsules mostly 5-merous (95%), otherwise 6-merous (4%), or 4- or 7-merous (1%). Profile boat-shaped, top flat to slightly convex or peaked. Face broadly elliptic to round, , up to 7 X 6,5 mm, cell-lids with numerous dark dots (tanniniferous idioblasts), cell-lid edges very distinct.
Seeds yellow-brown; rugose 1 to tuberculate 1. flecked.

* Information from CACTUS & Co, Vol. X, 1, pp 57-59 (2006)


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