Aloe (lat.Aloe) is a genus of succulent plants of the Liliaceae family, or Asphodelaceae, containing about 400 species. The name of the genus, translated from Arabic, means "bitter". Homeland: Africa, Madagascar, Arabian Peninsula.
Aloe is famous for its medicinal properties. More than 10 species of this wonderful plant are grown under indoor conditions, incl. Aloe vera, tree, brindle or variegated, folded, spinous.
The leaves are juicy, fleshy, with small thorns. Flowers rise on a long peduncle: red, white or orange. In indoor conditions, they bloom quite rarely.
Aloe tree (Aloe arborescens) is the most common indoor aloe, its other name is Centenary. Plant height - 50-80 cm. In nature it reaches a height of 3 m. In indoor conditions it rarely blooms. Grows well and quickly. Has medicinal properties.
Aloe variegated or Aloe tiger (Aloe variegate). The plant is 20-40 cm tall. Fleshy leaves 10-15 cm long are collected in compact basal rosettes. The leaves have nice white spots.
Aloe vera (Aloe vera). This succulent medicinal plant is a natural antibiotic and immunomodulator. Has antifungal, bactericidal and antiviral properties. Indoors it grows up to 40-60 cm.Other names for Aloe vera - Aloe barbadensis Mill., Aloe Lanza (Aloe lanzae Tod.), Indian Aloe (Aloe indica Royle), Aloe ordinary, Aloe yellow, Aloe medicinal ...
Aloe aristata (Aloe aristata). One of the smallest varieties of aloe - the diameter of the plant is 8-10 cm. It grows in the form of a rosette with numerous fleshy leaves covered with small thorns. Sometimes Aloe spinous is confused with Hawortia. Blooms indoors in spring or summer.
This slow growing agave will give you no trouble. It is enough to follow the general rules for caring for succulent plants. He is able to withstand overdrying for a long time and do without bright lighting. It is often used for landscaping children's rooms, offices, for decorating a winter garden. Also ideal for creating flower arrangements.
Lighting. Aloe loves a lot of light. The optimal location is on the south windows. If in winter the plant received little light, stretched out and turned pale, then it should first be shaded from the abundance of sunlight. In winter, aloe prefers additional lighting with lamps. If this is not possible, then the plant should be placed in the brightest place.
Temperature. In summer, it is better to keep the agave outdoors, at moderate air temperatures: on the balcony, terrace, in the garden. This succulent normally tolerates daily temperature drops, unlike other indoor plants, aloe loves when there is a noticeable difference between day and night air temperatures. Summer temperature - 20-26 ° С, in winter it is desirable to keep at 15-17 ° С.
Air humidity. An unpretentious succulent can grow in dry air and does not need to be sprayed. However, a warm shower in order to clean the leaves from dust will not harm the agave. During spraying, make sure that water does not enter the sinuses of the leaf outlets.
Watering. In the spring and summer, during the growth period, watering aloe abundantly so that the entire substrate in the pot is saturated with moisture. The water remaining in the pan must be drained. The frequency of watering at this time is about 1-2 times a week, but the topsoil should dry out between waterings. In autumn and winter, the frequency of watering is reduced to 1 time per month, it is especially important not to flood the plant, which is in a cool room.
Top dressing. For feeding aloe, fertilizer is used for cacti and succulents. Fertilized from April to September 1 time in 3 weeks into moist soil. Transplanted and grown plants do not need feeding in the first month after transplantation. Also, there is no need to fertilize diseased plants, they must first be cured.
Transfer. Young plants are transplanted annually in spring, adults - every 3-4 years. The soil for transplantation can be prepared independently from turf, leafy soil, humus and sand in a ratio of 2: 1: 1: 1 or you can take the purchased "For cacti and succulents". Most importantly, the soil should be light and loose. If there is no special soil, you can take 4/5 of the universal soil and 1/5 of coarse sand (perlite, vermiculite). At the bottom of the pot, drainage from expanded clay or broken red brick (crumbs) is required.
Trimming and shaping. Does not need pruning. If the agave is old and has lost its decorative effect, it can be rejuvenated by cutting off the bare part of the stem and rooting the plant. Just let the cuttings dry first by keeping them in the air for a week.
Bloom. In indoor conditions, it is possible to bloom some varieties of agave, for example, Aloe spinous. Small orange flowers on a long peduncle emerge from the center of the rosette. The flowering period is from March to September. After the end of the flowering period, the peduncle must be carefully cut off.
Reproduction. The easiest way is to propagate aloe with children located near the root of the mother plant. Children already have their own root system and they just need to be transplanted into separate pots.
Aloe can also be propagated by cuttings. For cuttings, the lateral shoots are cut off at the base of the stem, dried for 5-7 days and stuck into wet sand (or sand with peat) to a depth of 1 cm. Watering infrequently to prevent decay. When roots appear, watering is increased. After 1-2 weeks, they are transplanted into small pots.
Diseases and pests. With a lack of light in the summer or an excess of watering in winter, aloe stretches out and loses its decorative effect. Lethargic and pale leaves also signal plant overflow.
Aloe can be attacked by scale insects, mealybugs and spider mites. The main thing is to detect and recognize pests in time, as a rule, they are visible with the naked eye. Then they need to be scraped off and the leaves are washed with soapy water.
Aloe in winter. In winter, it is better to keep aloe in a bright place, the temperature is about 15-17 ° C. The main thing is not to flood the plant, this may have a bad effect on its growth. You should not put a pot of aloe near working batteries.
Beneficial features. Aloe, a folk agave, has many medicinal properties. Aloe juice is effective against many microbes, heals ulcers, burns, wounds, boils, eczema. Aloe is also used for sore throats, as a laxative and choleretic. However, it should be remembered that aloe is contraindicated for some people and can be used for treatment only after consulting a doctor.
Interesting Facts. According to the research of Academician V.P. Filatov, cut leaves of aloe, kept at a temperature of 6-8 degrees in a dark place, emit biogenic stimulants, which have a beneficial effect on vital processes in the human body.
It is known that if a flower is pulled from the ground along with the root, it will live for several more weeks, receiving the necessary substances from its reserves. If, after this, the aloe is planted again, it will immediately take root.
Once you have settled this wonderful plant in your home, you will enjoy the grace and evergreen appearance for many years, as well as admire its healing properties.
VIDEO: ALOE, GERAN, KALANHOE
The healing properties of aloe. Application in traditional medicine and contraindications.