Aloe spp

Aloes are succulents with origins in southern and eastern Africa that provide low desert gardens with a long show of tubular flowers on tall stalks.

Flowers: J F M A M J J A S O N D
Status: Non-native
Origin: Africa
Family: Asphodelaceae (formerly Xanthorrhoeaceae)
Size: Varies by species
Sun: Partial or filtered during summer is best. Full sun in winter.
Growth Rate:
Soil: Tolerant, but prefer good drainage
Temperature: Typically hardy to 24 F
Disease and Pests: Aloe mite (remove affected leaves to prevent spread)
Uses: Attracts Hummingbirds

Common Species

  • Aloe Vera (Aloe barbadensis) – Also known as Medicinal Aloe, grows to 2′ tall with light green leaves and brilliant yellow flowers. The sap has been used since ancient times to treat burns and skin problems. Grows well in the filtered sun under desert trees. Moderate growth with a clumping form. Supplemental irrigation, divide clumps every 3-5 years. Attracts hummingbirds. Caution: hosts black widow spiders within the clumps.
  • Aloe x ‘Blue Elf’ – Grows to 18″ in a clumping form with orange red flowers. Cold hardy to 20 F. Prefers regular irrigation and well drained soil. Leaves turn reddish-purple when under drought or cold stress. Divide clumps every 3-5 years.
  • Tree Aloe (Aloe ferox) – Can form a trunk 6 – 10′ tall with 2′ long blue green leaves. Striking orange-red blooms.


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