There are many different types of aloe plants, and each one has its own unique set of benefits. Humans have cultivated the aloe plant for thousands of years as a decorative and medicinal item. Aloe, also known as the Wonder Plant, has therapeutic effects and some kinds of gel may be applied directly to the skin or consumed in pill form to improve health and well-being.
Aloe plants require plenty of sun and shade. It grows in zones 8 through 11, but it’s best cultivated inside in zones 8 and 9. There are approximately 580 species of Aloe according to the World Checklist of Selected Plant Families, with over 100 gaining popularity every year.
In this article, we will discuss the most common types of aloe plants and their individual uses.
Aloe vera is the best-known type of aloe plant, but there are many other varieties that can be used for medicinal purposes or simply to beautify your home. If you’re interested in learning more about these amazing plants, keep reading:
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Aloe Aculeata is a type of aloe plant that is native to Limpopo valley, South Africa. It is a small, spiny aloe that typically grows about 2 feet tall. Aloe aculeata has long been used in traditional African medicine to treat a variety of ailments, including skin problems, wounds, and burns.
The succulent, stemless aloe has a single rosette that is up to 1 m tall and wide. The huge, long leaves are up to 120 mm broad at the base. The rosette’s rounded form is due to the curved inwards upperparts. Reddish-brown, triangular teeth line the leaf margins. Each thorn comes from a thick base and has a distinctively darker colour than the rest of the leaf, giving it a striped appearance.
Aloe Barbadensis Miller
Aloe barbadensis Miller, also known as Sabila or Aloe Vera, is a succulent plant that grows throughout the world and is one of the most widely cultivated plants owing to its use in cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and food production. The Greek term aloe refers to the plant’s toxic liquid, which has an unpleasant bitterness to it.
Aloe barbadensis Miller plants are succulents that are simple to grow. According to the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, aloe vera plants, commonly known as aloe vera plants, are perhaps the most widely used medicinal plant in the world. They can only be cultivated outdoors in the USA and they prefer hardiness zones 8 through 11 due to their sensitivity to cold. Indoor growth is possible, though limited by its sensitivity.
The short-leaved aloe (Aloe brevifolia) is a flowering plant in the family Asphodelaceae. It’s a tiny, compact, blue-green evergreen succulent perennial that’s native to South Africa’s Western Cape. On IUCN’s global Red List, it is listed as Vulnerable since its natural habitat is threatened, but it is also widely cultivated as an ornamental plant in rock gardens and desert gardens across the world. In areas where temperatures drop below freezing during the winter season, it may be grown under glass or as a houseplant.
This perennial may grow to be 4 inches tall and create additional rosettes from its sides. As a result, it can develop into large clusters. The leaves are little and fat with soft, non-harmful white teeth around the edge. It blooms from mid-June to mid-September, and it’s one of the first flowers to bloom. It has bright red flowers that hang off a (relatively) tall inflorescence in November.
The Aloe broomii plant is a short-stemmed, robust aloe that grows up to 60 inches tall with the inflorescence included. It’s usually solitary, although the heads may divide to form clusters of up to 3 rosettes. The leaves are green and have reddish-brown teeth along the margins, and they’re grouped in a tight rosette.
The inflorescence is a branched (complex) raceme 40-60 inches long with densely flowered, un-branched flowers (simple). The flowers are light greenish-yellow and 20-25 mm long. The buds are completely hidden behind large bracts that are packed tightly together like tiles on a roof. Flowers open in an approx. 100 mm wide zone from the bottom of the inflorescence upwards, but all that can be seen of them are the stamens and stigmas that stick out beyond the bracts. It blooms during the spring season, and the seed matures during the summer months.
Aloe cameraei is a medium-sized succulent plant that can grow up to 1 to 2 feet tall and 2 to 4 feet wide. It thrives in moist, sandy soil in full sun or partial shade for a robust profile.
The evergreen red aloe thrives in hot, arid areas and can live up to 40 years or more when grown in ideal circumstances. Succulents known as Aloe Cameronii are drought-resistant, making them the best choice for dry regions. In terms of hardiness, Aloe Cameronii is resistant to zones 7 through 10 – this demonstrates the plant’s ability to withstand light frosts in the winter.
The majority of the growing season for the Cameronii aloe occurs indoors during the winter months.
Aloe Capitata Var. Quartziticola
Aloe capitata var. quartziticola – A stemless aloe with a dense but open rosette and numerous 2 inch wide by 12 to 18 inch long grey-green fleshy leaves that can be blushed with blue, pink, or even dark red on the leaves and have red margins and small sharp brown teeth.
In mid-winter, above ground inflorescences with dense 4-inch long round capitate racemes of orange buds on reddish pedicles that open to reveal orange-yellow 1-inch long thin bell-shaped flowers that bloom first near the top. Plant in full sun to partial shade in well-drained soil and provide occasional to regular watering.
The var. quartziticola variety of aloe is exceptionally hardy and can withstand temperatures as low as 25°F for short periods, according to Aloes: The Definitive Guide. It has survived 20°F at the Ruth Bancroft Garden in Walnut Creek. This is a very beautiful plant when in bloom because of its large, almost spherical, bright-coloured flowers with numerous flowers where are sometimes more than 100 buds.
Aloe ciliaris is a small to medium-sized evergreen succulent plant that can grow up to 12 inches (30 cm) tall and 24 inches (61 cm) wide. It has dense rosettes of fleshy, green leaves with white spots and red margins. The flowers are orange-yellow, tubular, and borne on an inflorescence up to 18 inches (46 cm) long.
It blooms in winter and is pollinated by bees. The fruit is a dry capsule that splits open when ripe to release the seeds. Aloe ciliaris is native to the Eastern Cape, from the Baviaanskloof mountains as far as the Ciskei in South Africa. It grows best in full sun or partial shade and well-drained soil.
Aloe Crosby’s Prolific
The leaves of this tiny or dwarf aloe are long with translucent teeth. The plant produces orange-red blooms and the leaves turn red in the sun, adding to the aesthetic appeal of your landscaping design. It’s ideal for pots as well as beds.
Aloe Crosby’s prolific is a cross between Aloe nobilis and Aloe humilis var. echinatum, which is a perennial evergreen succulent. Due to their beauty, they are commonly grown as ornamental plants by many people.
This is one of the most well-known South African plants, with a long history of medicinal usage. KwaZulu-Natal’s attractive variety of Aloe ferox can be found in the Umkomaas and Umlaas river catchment areas, particularly between the midlands and coast. This was previously known as A candelabrum and has subsequently been included in the species.
The bitter aloe shrub has thick, broad leaves and grows up to 2-3 meters tall with the leaves in a rosette. The stem is coated with an old “petticoat” of leaves that remain after drying. The leaves are a dull green colour, and occasionally have a bluish tint to them.
They may also be tinged with red. A lovely form of the A. candelabrum has slightly curved leaf tips. Spines along the edge of the leaf are reddish-brown in colouration. Spines can also be found on both the top and underside layers of the leaves. Young plants tend to be extremely prickly.
Aloe hereroensis is a lush, erect climber with deeply folded leaves and grows to be about 50cm broad. The plant is generally stem-free, although older plants occasionally develop a very short stem. It can sucker to form tiny groups when grown as an ornamental. For medicinal usage, the plant is taken from the wild. It’s sometimes utilized as an ornaturali.
It grows in full shade and bright light and well-drained soil are required. Aloe species (like the aloe hereroensi) use Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM). Plants that use the CAM system may conduct carbon dioxide fixation at night and photosynthesis during the day, minimizing water loss. Their succulent leaves and stems, as well as their thick cuticle, makes them ideally suited to dry environments.
Even though it is a summer-grown plant, it qualifies as a garden plant all year. Even in the middle of winter (May-July) or spring (August, September), when the bright red and yellow to orange flowers stand out against the backdrop of brown fallen leaves, there is always something to see.
Aloe maculata is smooth, flaky, and green in colour. Its distinctive flat-topped inflorescences and usually, uniformly coloured flowers distinguish it from other spotted aloes found in the area. The broad, triangular leaves vary considerably in length and form but are often recurved towards the dried, twisted tips.
The inflorescence (a raceme) can have up to six branches. The open flower stalks are longer than the bud stalks. The colors yellow, red, and orange are available. Flowering time is unpredictable, with some variants blooming in the summer (January), winter (June), or spring (August and September).
Aloe marlothii is a succulent plant that originates from Africa. It is a very drought tolerant plant and does well in full sun or partial shade. The leaves of the plant are long and have a translucent appearance with sharp teeth along the edges.
The plant produces orange-red blooms and the leaves turn red in the sun, adding to the aesthetic appeal of your landscaping design. It is ideal for pots as well as beds.
Aloe marlothii is a cross between Aloe nobilis and Aloe humilis var. echinatum, which is a perennial evergreen succulent. Due to their beauty, they are commonly grown as ornamental plants by landscapers and home gardeners.
The plant is low-maintenance and easy to care for, which makes it a great choice for beginners. They are also tolerant of neglect and can survive long periods without water.
One of the most floriferous aloes in South Africa is Aloe microstigma. It’s a common and widespread plant that turns drab winter scenery into a wonderland with its spectacular bright colours that mimic flames on candles.
The flowering plants of the genus are typically solitary or in small clusters, growing to a height of approximately 600 millimetres. The leaves are rosetted and blue-green in colour, but they can become crimson brown if subjected to environmental stress. White markings may be seen on the leaves, which contrast nicely with the crimson teeth along the margins.
The plant blooms in May and July, when it gives off two or three flowers at once. The inflorescences are up to 1 m tall. The flowers are bicoloured, with orange-tinged redbuds. However, the buds and open flowers may be uniformly red or yellow in some locations.
The succulent flower, which is called the rock aloe since it grows in rocky areas, is ideal for yards with difficult terrain. The beautiful bicoloured blooms will entice nectar-feeding birds to your garden.
The stems of this aloe are generally short and stemless. It grows to a height of between 450 and 600 millimetres. Single, dense leafy rosettes form the plants. The rosette has a rounded appearance owing to the inward-curving upper leaves. The leaves are greyish green and long, with broad bases and narrow tips. On the top, as well as underside, there are numerous spines on them. Leaf margins have 5mm long, sharp brown triangular teeth scattered along with them.
The Aloe tree is an unusual succulent native to Madagascar that has several forked branches and a grey trunk. Clusters of fan-shaped blue-green leaves adorn each limb, giving this succulent its name. The leaves are oblong in shape and grow upward. As the old, lower leaves fall away from the branches, more of the trunk can be seen. In the spring, look for bright red blooms.
Aloe plicatilis “Fan Aloe” is a hummingbird-attracting deer-resistant Aloe plant with fan-shaped leaves. The succulent’s name, “plicatilis,” refers to the folding nature of its leaves, which are shaped like a fan. “Fan Aloe” is resistant to fire, making it an ideal xeriscape addition.
While the gorgeous spirals of this succulent are fascinating, they are quite sharp. Each plant is unique, and the spiral can rotate either clockwise or counterclockwise. It’s one of the more challenging succulents to cultivate.
A unique succulent is the “Spiral Aloe,” which has five rows of leaves and a rosette structure. Each row includes 15 to 30 sharply pointed leaves, making for a 1-foot (31 cm) wide rosette. The spring Pink-Orange Flowers bloom on Aloe polyphylla.
Aloe rubroviolacea, also known as Aloe rosseae, is a lovely species from Yemen’s mountains and neighboring Saudi Arabia. Its name refers to the leaves’ violet-red tones at times of water scarcity. The brilliant spires of crimson blooms emerge in winter and are accompanied by a large clump of this species every year.
If there is enough cold, the flowers may be damaged; however, additional stalks usually appear to keep the display going. Temperatures as low as 20 degrees Fahrenheit do not bother the plants in any way (below -4 on the Celsius scale).
Stray flowers may be encountered at other times of the year, but the real fireworks are always in winter. A. rubroviolacea thrives in steep and rocky regions where it is semi-pendent in its natural habitats. It does just fine on level ground, however, where it grows only along the ground.