Graptopetalum Amethystinum (Lavender Pebbles) – Care Guide

Graptopetalum Amethystinum with flowers

The Graptopetalum Amethystinum succulent, also known as Lavender Pebbles, is a species native to the deserts of Mexico, mainly in the states of Durango, Sinaloa, Jalisco, and Zacatecas.

Its stunning beauty and rarity make it highly sought after by succulent enthusiasts and collectors alike.

In this guide, I will share with you all the information you need to know about the characteristics, care, and reproduction of this succulent.

Table

Main characteristics

  • Light: semi-shade to full sun
  • Height: grows up to 15 cm tall and 30 cm wide
  • Soil: fast draining
  • Watering: normal
  • Minimum temperature: -2°C
  • Propagation: by seeds, offsets, leaves and stem cuttings
  • Origin: Mexico (Durango, Sinaloa, Jalisco, and Zacatecas)
  • Common names: Lavender Pebbles
  • Price: $5-15 USD

The Marble Rose belongs to the Crassulaceae family. It grows in a rosette form with plump leaves in shades of lavender, pink, and green. It can grow up to 15 cm tall and 30 cm wide.

During spring and part of summer, it produces star-shaped flowers with colors ranging from cream to light yellow at the base and reddish hues at their tips.

Rosette of Lavender Pebbles with damaged farina
Photo by @sevssucculents

Graptopetalum Amethystinum Care

Light

Like any succulent with intense pink colors, the Graptopetalum Amethystinum needs 4 to 8 hours of direct sun per day.

However, if it was protected by a shade mesh or something similar at the nursery where you bought it, it's important not to expose it to this amount of sun immediately but to gradually acclimate it until it becomes accustomed.

Once it is adapted to being in direct sun for a few hours, it can even withstand direct midday sun without getting burned, especially in places where the heat is not too extreme.

Watering

As for watering, Graptopetalum Amethystinum, like most succulents with thick leaves, stores a significant amount of water in both its leaves and stems.

This is why you must be very careful with the watering of this succulent to prevent it from rotting. Only water it when the soil is completely dry and avoid watering if the soil is still wet, as it can harm the plant and lead to rotting.

If you want to intensify its green tones, you can slightly reduce its water intake without allowing it to become dehydrated. For example, if you normally water it every 9 days, you can wait a couple of days between each watering, and this will intensify its color. This technique is called "stressing" the plant.

Soil

The ideal substrate for the Graptopetalum Amethystinum should allow for rapid drainage to avoid excessive moisture, which as I mentioned earlier, is a very common problem with this succulent due to the amount of water it retains in its leaves and stem.

In addition to soil, the substrate should include something more loose or porous like gravel, volcanic rock, or tree bark. This will prevent the leaf from retaining too much water and help its roots grow more easily.

In general, the average substrate should have the following proportions:

  • 50% common soil for succulents with worm humus
  • 30% gravel, volcanic rock, tree bark or a mixture of all
  • 15% peat or perlite
  • 5% river sand
  • Optional: A little ground eggshell and aquarium activated carbon to prevent the formation of mold

Of course, the proportions of each material can vary depending on the temperature and humidity of the place where you live.

Lavender Pebbles in a white pot
Photo by @succycrazy

Also, if you are unable to get all the materials, no problem. The important thing is always to maintain a higher percentage of inorganic materials to make the substrate ventilated, light, with rapid drainage and not too high in nutrients.

  • Organic: peat, coconut fiber, worm humus, compost, etc.
  • Inorganic: gravel, volcanic rock, perlite, vermiculite, sand, etc.

Additionally, having the container with holes in its base will help a lot to further improve drainage.

Temperature

The ideal temperature for Graptopetalum Amethystinum is the same as most succulents. This means a maximum temperature between 21°C and 28°C during the day and a minimum temperature of 14°C to 16°C at night. However, it can withstand higher and lower temperatures.

The minimum temperature in which it can live without major problems is 10°C. It can even withstand temperatures as low as -2°C but not for an extended period of time (not more than 2 or 3 days). If it is exposed to these temperatures for a longer time, it is likely to die quickly.

How to propagate Graptopetalum Amethystinum

Graptopetalum Amethystinum can be propagated by seeds, shoots, leaves and stem cuttings.

Shoots and cuttings propagation are the most common and effective options and seeds have been the least used option as it takes much longer.

Below, I explain how to reproduce the Lavender Pebbles by each method:

Leaf propagation

Graptopetalum Amethystinum can be effectively propagated from leaves if the necessary recommendations and care are followed, although it is a slower process compared to stem cuttings and offshoots methods.

Here is a step-by-step explanation of how to propagate this ghost plant from leaves:

  1. Detach the leaf: You must carefully remove the leaf, making sure to completely remove it from its base and leaving no fragments on the stem. It is best to use a lower leaf. Try to do it as if you were turning it - from left to right and vice versa - the margin of error is much lower than when you simply pull it with force and in one direction.
  2. Place it in a pot or container: Place the leaf in a pot or container that has been previously disinfected with alcohol. The substrate should be at least 4 centimeters deep. When you put the leaf, place it upside down to allow the roots to grow, they can penetrate under the substrate and avoid direct sunlight. Another option is to slightly bury the leaf in the substrate. If you do it this way, you would avoid covering the roots in step 4.
  3. Put the pot in a place with indirect light: Although in its normal state this succulent does not have problems with direct sunlight, when you are propagating it from leaves, it is not recommended to expose it, especially in the early stages of its growth.
  4. Cover the roots and water the substrate: When the roots begin to grow, they must be covered with substrate and given normal care: good lighting and watering every time the substrate is dry.
  5. If you propagated several, transplant to individual pots: Over time, the plant will grow more until it has a stem and the mother leaf will wither and drop away naturally. Once it has shed, if you propagated it with other leaves, it will be time to transplant it to a small individual pot for it to continue its growth with more space. If you propagated it alone, simply remove the mother leaf to avoid pests and continue giving it normal care recommended for this succulent.

Note: In case you made the wrong cut, and a portion of the leaf remains on the stem, the reproduction will not work. Therefore, you will have to cut another leaf to propagate and dispose of the one you cut wrongly.

Leaf propagation of Graptopetalum Amethystinum
Photo by @slcplantkween

Offshoots or pups propagation

When given the proper care and conditions, Graptopetalum Amethystinum occasionally produces shoots. These are small fully formed plants that grow at the base of the main plant or mother plant.

To propagate the ghost plant by offshoots, follow these steps:

  1. Choose the shoots: Try to choose the most mature shoots, even if they already have some roots on the stem. These shoots are easier to detach and will grow faster.
  2. Remove the shoots: Carefully remove them from the mother plant using disinfected scissors or cutters. Some shoots may come off just by gently twisting them. In any case, always be careful not to damage the roots.
  3. Plant the shoots: Plant them in a small pot with common succulent soil, one pot for each sprout. For your soil mix, remember to follow the recommendations mentioned above.
  4. Water the substrate: You should water the substrate generously and wait until it is completely dry to water again. Some people recommend watering with a spray bottle during the first 2 or 3 weeks, especially for the shoots that do not have roots.
Offshoots propagation of Graptopetalum Amethystinum
Photo by @our_garden

The ideal time to transplant offshoots is during spring, as it is the season when they grow and reproduce the fastest. However, transplanting can also be done in other seasons, but growth may be slower.

This method, being small fully formed shoots, is very effective and enables the plant to quickly adapt to its new environment.

Stem cuttings propagation

This method is the most effective for propagating Graptopetalum Amethystinum, excluding shoots propagation, which is a natural process, and we cannot do much to control it.

Stem cuttings, being pairs of leaves along with their stem, usually grow roots in a short period of time.

Follow these steps to propagate the black rose succulent by stem cuttings:

  1. Choose the cutting: When selecting a cutting to propagate, it is advisable to choose one that is not too small, it is best to select a well-formed and mature cutting, this will promote easier and faster root development.
  2. Separate the cutting: Once chosen, separate the cutting very carefully using a knife, scissors, or cutter previously sterilized with alcohol. It is important to ensure that the cut made on the cutting is as straight as possible, this facilitates the wound healing process and helps the cutting to generate roots faster once planted in the soil.
  3. Remove leaves from the stem’s base: Alternatively, once you cut the cutting, remove the lower leaves to leave the base of the stem free to facilitate root generation, with 1 or 2 cm will be enough.
  4. Let the wound dry: As the wound remains moist, it is advisable to let the cutting dry for 1 or 2 days until its callus forms. To promote healing, you can leave it in a well-ventilated area, away from direct sunlight and in a vertical position, such as hanging or propped up.
  5. Place the cutting into a pot: Once the cutting has healed, place it into a pot filled with soil. Wait 5-7 days before watering to allow the cutting to develop stronger and healthier roots while continuing to heal.

After the first watering, continue to care for the plant as previously mentioned.

What do you think about Graptopetalum Amethystinum?

If you liked this article, consider sharing it with other succulent enthusiasts on your social networks. We will be thrilled if it reaches a wider audience and provides more people with valuable insights on the cultivation and propagation of Graptopetalum Amethystinum, the famous Lavender Pebbles.

All the best taking care of your plants!

Sources and cover image:

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Luis Camacho

I'm passionate about traveling, trekking and gardening. In this blog i want to share everything I learn throughout my journey and help you get the best of your plants.

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