Aloe vera, Aloe, or Aloe vera plant, is also known as the ‘medicine plant’. Find facts and information on Aloe vera plants and find out why these succulent plants have been used to soothe burns and insect bites for many years.
Aloe Vera may be referred to as ‘burn plant’ or just ‘aloe’. The sap from the aloe leaves are used for first aid and healthcare purposes. Aloe Vera is not grown in the yard and garden, unless you live in a tropical, arid region of the country. It is a commonly found as a potted plant indoors. Aloes can be kept outside when the weather is hot, but will need to be brought inside during the cold seasons.
Aloe vera( barbadensis), is a succulent plant that forms spiky leaves with white marks. The aloe vera plants stores water inside its leaves to help it grow in arid hot climates. The leaves appear as vase-shaped succulent leaves of medium texture. They are extremely easy to grow because they require no special care. The worst thing you can do is to over water them. Aloe can be planted as a single plant in a pot, or placed in a dish garden. They make great indoor houseplants too.
Aloe vera should be planted in a cactus soil mixture and should be kept dry between waterings. Provide aloe with bright light when possible. Low light causes the stems to become more leggy than thick. If you happen to have grow lights inside they can be placed under them alongside your other indoor plants. Aloes grow rather quickly and will multiply fairly quickly. They do well in a kitchen window where they receive bright light from outdoors. It is handy to have an aloe in reach for those occasional kitchen burns.
Aloe thrives in average to hot temperatures (60-85degrees F.) and low humidity (below 30%). After you let them become fairly dry, you can then water them thoroughly. Make sure that the pot drains properly as the plant will rot if it gets too much water. Don’t let the plant sit in water.
Repotting is only necessary when the plant becomes too heavy to be in its present container. Try using terra cotta pots for your aloe vera plants because they absorbs moisture and lets your plant dry out more quickly.
Feeding aloes is done only three times in the summer with any type of foliage only fertilizer. Be sure to remove any damaged or withered leaves to keep the plant looking attractive and healthy.
Propagation of Aloe Vera Plants
Aloes can be divided when the plant has a good root system or you can separate the little offsets that form around the base of the plant. These are small plantlets that form from the mother plant.
There are over 240 species of the Aloe plant. They originated from northern Africa and the Mediterranean areas. Only about 4 species are used extensively.
Tree aloe (A. Arborescens) has a stalk and bears its leaves at the top.
A. Zanzibarica has stubby, thick leaves and remains small.
Spider aloe (A. Bumilis) looks like a spider with incurved blue-green leaves.