And now, for a brief break from our usual anthurium related fare, here is a post on aloe care…
There are many different varieties of Aloe plants. They range in size from one inch to two feet across. Most species are from Africa and the most popular variety is Aloe Vera, which is often used for treating sunburns. Aloe plants are almost 95% water so freezing weather is very harmful for them. If you live in an area that freezes, you will have to grow your plant indoors. Here are my simple guidelines for aloe care. If you follow them, you should have little trouble keeping your plant alive.
Pot your aloe in a loose soil that drains well. A good soil to use is a cactus mix or you can use a regular potting soil by adding extra sand or perlite to it. You don’t need a huge pot to grow an aloe. An eight inch plant should have little problem growing in a four inch pot.
Put your plant in a place that receives a lot of sun. It is somewhat of a desert plant and it can handle all of the sun that you can throw at it. Either put it near a sunny window or put it outside. But if you put it outside make sure that the temperature never falls below freezing. Frost can kill your plant.
Make sure you don’t over-water it. It should go about two weeks between waterings and the soil should be allowed to dry out. During the winter, your plant’s metabolism will slow and you should reduce the amount of water that is provided. Fertilize it once or twice a year, but use half of the recommended dose on the label. These plants don’t need as much nutrition as other plants.
When it is time to repot, use a wider, rather than a deeper, pot. The roots of an aloe tend to spread out rather than go deeper. If your plant has produced offshoots, you can also use repotting as an opportunity to propagate your aloe by planting the offshoots into pots of their own.