Split Rock Plant (Pleiospilos Nelii)

The Pleiospilos Nelii (Split Rock, Cleft Stone, Mimicry Plant) is a species of succulent perennial that belongs to the Aizoaceae family and is native to South Africa. 

It is a very popular plant for its rock-like morphology and elegant flowers.

It is a small and curious succulent plant, formed by 1 or 2 pairs of very fleshy hemispherical leaves separated by a gray-green groove, with many dark dots. 

Its leaves can reach approximately 6 cm in height, this plant is quite small compared to other succulent plants. 

The formation of new leaves causes the old leaves to dry gradually.

They produce yellow, orange or pink flowers that arise alone from the recess of the leaves and open afternoon, which bloom from mid-summer to late autumn. 

The flowers are very attractive and large compared to the size of the plant and measure approximately 3 cm in diameter and appear solitary in the central region.

Tips to take care of the plant Pleiospilos Nelii “Split Rock Plant”

The Pleiospilos Nelii plant is interesting and unusual. 

It is an excellent indoor plant in small pots. 

Outdoor is an attractive plant for a bright patio, terrace or balcony in summer.

Ideally, the pot has a depth of 3 inches (7 cm) to 5 inches (12 cm) to accommodate the long root of the plant.


The substrate must be very well-drained.

You can use a mixture of 25% of very decomposed leaf mulch, 25% of loose garden soil and 50% of siliceous sand. 

Or you can mix 1/3 of poor organic matter with 2/3 of coarse sand to make an ideal substrate and you can also incorporate small fragments of charcoal to act with natural fungicide.

Proper drainage is essential, so make sure the pot has a hole in the bottom. 

Never add a layer of rocks to the bottom of the pot. This does nothing for drainage and only elevates the water table, which can eventually lead to root rot.


This plant needs to grow in very bright places. 

It is good that you receive some hours of direct sun in the morning and late afternoon. 

But you should take care of the plant in the hottest hours of the day (noon) to avoid burns on its leaves.


For better development of the plant it is recommended to keep it in a cool or warm climate where temperatures are maintained between 15-26 ° C. Since, it does not tolerate temperatures below 6 ° C.


Pleiospilos Nelii requires very little water to survive. 

Watering this plant is very simple, you should only expect the substrate to be completely dry between irrigation and irrigation, both in summer and winter (you should be a little more careful about irrigation at this time of year).

Plagues and Diseases

The split rock plant is a plant that is not very attacked by many pests, but it is extremely susceptible to root rot from fungal attacks when the substrate’s humidity is high.

Some occasional mealybug may appear on its leaves that can be removed very easily with the hands. 

You should also be careful with snails and slugs that can devour roots, flowers and leaf fragments.


Pleiospilos Nelii can spread by dividing the leaves. 

Using a sharp, sterile knife, remove a blade from the main floor and let the blade rest for a day or two, before placing it on sandy soil with good drainage.

Another way of propagation is from seeds harvested from the flower pod or purchased from a physical store as well as online. 

You should only take into account that you must sow the seeds in the summer season and in a warm place.

Just soak the Pleiospilos Nelii seeds in water for 24 hours before planting the seeds, in a small layer of sandy soil. 

Another important aspect is that you should keep the soil moist, but not too moist until the seeds germinate.


You can pay the split rock plant in spring and summer with mineral fertilizers, such as Nitrofoska once a month.


As we mentioned earlier, when the new leaves begin to come out, the old ones begin to dry out. 

If the old leaves have not dried completely when the new ones have come out, you can cut the old leaves, but be careful not to mistreat the new leaves. 

If they do not come off easily, leave the old leaves until they dry out, as it will not damage the plant.


Another advantage of the split rock plant is that it is harmless to animals and humans.