Aloe vera is an absolute trend plant that is used and valued in many ways. The succulent is popular as a decorative plant for the room or for conservatories. In the cosmetics and health industry, aloe is known as an insider tip. The easy-care plant can be kept in a pot for many years and can be propagated via offshoots. Since the plant comes from tropical areas, it prefers warm temperatures, is not frost hardy and can only be in the garden in summer. Also as a room climate plantthe aloe is appreciated. The houseplant has the ability to filter formaldehyde from the room air and to convert carbon dioxide into oxygen even at night. The succulent is decorative and useful at the same time.
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Worth knowing about aloe vera
Botanical name: aloe vera
Other names: aloe, desert lily, real aloe vera, real aloe
Use: houseplant, room climate plant, plant for glass jars, conservatory
Origin: southern Africa
Flower colours: yellow, orange, red
Special features: flowers from the 3rd year between March and May. A cool hibernation promotes flowering. The aloe vera plant stores large amounts of water in the fleshy leaves and can therefore do without watering for a long time. The gel-like plant sap contained in the leaves is highly valued in naturopathy. Tolerates the sun very well. Easy propagation by offshoots.
In which location does aloe vera feel most comfortable?
The undemanding genus prefers a warm location in the room. A place that has a lot of light and is evenly warm is ideal. The succulents also tolerate blazing sun well, but brown leaf tips can form in extreme dryness and heat. From the end of May the aloe vera plant can be outdoors. It is important that you gradually acclimate the aloe to outdoor conditions. Clearing out on overcast days has proven its worth. Look for a rain-protected location in the garden. Full sun can cause the leaves to turn reddish. However, this is only a natural reaction to the sun’s rays, in a half-shaded place the leaves quickly turn green again. From September it is advisable to move the succulent plants into the house. A cool and bright hibernation at 10 to 15 °C is possible. As with almost all plants in winter quarters, it is important to reduce watering. Of course, the aloe vera can also be in the house all year round.
Our gardening tip: Young plants don’t tolerate the sun quite as well as old plants. Therefore, a partially shaded location is recommended for aloe vera offshoots.
How do I care for my aloe vera?
Aloe vera care is quite simple. The demands on potting soil and temperature correspond to their origin. Therefore, essential for the succulent plants:
- a sunny location
- low watering
In addition to the right site conditions, hardly any care measures are necessary for the plant. Over time, the lower part of the leaves will turn brown and dry. Remove the dead parts of the plant (the bottom leaves) regularly. Depending on growth and the soil used, transplanting is recommended every two to three years. You can buy the right potting soil from us.
How do I water my aloe vera properly?
The frugal species requires little water. Water only when the soil feels dry. As a typical succulent, it has a moderate to low water requirement. Depending on the location, plant size, substrate and temperature, watering once a week can be sufficient. It is best to water with low-lime water, but also with rainwater at room temperature. During the winter, the substrate is only kept moderately moist. When watering, be careful that
- watered from below as much as possible.
- the leaves are not wetted.
- excess water is poured off.
- there is never waterlogging.
Our gardening tip: sagging leaves are a sign of low soil moisture. The aloe vera plant recovers quickly and the leaves become plump and firm again when watered.
How do I fertilize my aloe vera?
In contrast to other plants, aloe vera also thrive with a low supply of nutrients. The succulent plant is a pronounced weak eater and requires little fertilizer. With good care and regular repotting, you can fertilize every 6 to 8 weeks during the main growing season (May to August). A fertilizer that is tailored to the needs of cacti and succulents is optimal. With a high-quality special fertilizer you administer all the necessary nutrients in the right composition. The cactus fertilizer is added to the irrigation water as a liquid fertilizer and thus optimally supplies the exotic plants. In the cold season you can do without the addition of fertilizer.
How do I repot my aloe vera plant?
Newly purchased aloes usually have to be transplanted into fresh soil after 2 to 3 years. Repotting can take place immediately when the new plants have already completely filled the container, many new offshoots (so-called Kindel) have formed and the root has grown luxuriantly. Transplanting in the spring has proved successful. Use a high-quality special soil that is well permeable and structurally stable. A high-quality special soil such as cactus soil or a mixture of peat-free potting soil and coarse sand is suitable for this. The pH should be 6 to 7.2. When transplanting, the houseplant can also be propagated directly. Small offshoots are removed and planted in growing substrate. With proper care, the offshoots form their own roots within a few weeks. Immediately after transplanting, do not fertilize for 6 to 8 weeks.
Repotting in 8 steps
- Remove the aloe plant from the pot.
- Loosen the root ball.
- Carefully remove some of the old soil.
- Put a drainage layer on the bottom of the pot.
- Put some soil in the pot.
- Place the plant upright in the larger planter.
- Fill good quality substrate around the root ball and press down lightly.
- Finally, water thoroughly.
How do I overwinter my aloe vera?
It is important that you bring the aloe vera plant into the house in good time in late summer. Low temperatures are not tolerated and in winter the genus would freeze to death outdoors. Overwintering can take place in a normally heated room. A cool hibernation (10 to 15 degrees Celsius) and sufficient light has proven itself for flowering. In the winter quarters you should water less and refrain from fertilizing. Unheated staircases or basement windows with sufficient incidence of light are suitable. Drafts and large temperature fluctuations should be avoided.
How do I propagate my aloe vera?
Large specimens may be divided when transplanted. To do this, plant the sections in a container with propagation substrate. The offshoots form new roots within a few weeks. You can also cut off sections of the mother plant with a sharp knife. Propagation by cuttings is most successful in spring. Due to the water-rich tissue, it is helpful if you let the cut surfaces dry well before planting. This will prevent the young plants from rotting. It should only be watered very little until the roots develop. Once the offshoots have established themselves and are growing, they can be transplanted into larger pots.
What pests and diseases can aloe vera get?
Aloe vera plants are extremely robust and are very rarely attacked by diseases and pests. Mistakes in care are usually responsible for root rot. With proper care, there are no significant problems. Make sure you are in the right location.
Are you looking for more information about pests and diseases or do you have questions about a plant problem? Our plant doctors will be happy to help you – in person and online!
FAQ — Frequently Asked Questions
Is aloe vera toxic?
All parts of the aloe plant contain enzymes, essential amino acids and aloin. The latter can lead to symptoms of poisoning if overdosed. Therefore, the plant is not suitable for consumption.
Why do aloe vera get brown leaves?
Brown leaves are usually the result of too much moisture and too little light. Improve conditions and, if necessary, plant the exotics in fresh substrate in combination with sand for drainage.
Are there other types of aloe?
In addition to the well-known aloe vera, there are around 250 other species. However, only aloe vera is said to have a cosmetic effect. For example, Aloe aristata is a species that tolerates temperatures down to -7°C. Known as tree aloe, Aloe arborescens can grow over 2 meters tall. Basically, however, the care of the plants is identical. With us you can give away these plants. You can also find other gift ideas with us.