Aloe Vera (Aloe barbadensis miller) is a versatile plant known for its medicinal properties and succulent charm. With its distinctive thick, pointed leaves and ability to thrive under various conditions, it’s a favorite among plant lovers.
Aloe Vera Care Card
|Bright, indirect light or some direct morning/evening sunlight
|Water deeply but infrequently, allowing the soil to dry out between watering
|Low to moderate
|Well-draining, sandy or succulent mix
Aloe Vera is a fantastic choice for desert or arid terrariums due to its drought-tolerant nature. Due to its size, it is best placed in the mid-ground or background, depending on the overall design and size of the terrarium.
Detailed Care Instructions
Light: Aloe Vera prefers bright light and can tolerate a few hours of direct sunlight, especially in the morning or evening. However, too much intense, mid-day sun can cause leaf burn.
Water: Aloe Vera requires a ‘soak and dry’ watering technique. Water the plant thoroughly and then let the soil dry out completely before watering again. Overwatering can lead to root rot, a common issue with succulents.
Soil and Fertilizer: Plant your Aloe Vera in a well-draining, sandy or succulent soil mix to prevent waterlogging. Fertilize sparingly; feeding it once in the spring with a balanced houseplant or succulent fertilizer is usually sufficient.
Pruning and Repotting: Aloe Vera requires minimal pruning. Remove any dead or dried out leaves from the base. Repot every 2-3 years or when the plant becomes root-bound.
Troubleshooting Common Problems
Aloe Vera is generally low maintenance but can suffer from overwatering, resulting in root rot. If leaves become soft, mushy, or discolored, you may be watering too much. Additionally, watch out for common succulent pests such as mealybugs.
Aloe Vera can be propagated from pups or offsets that form around the base of the mature plant. Gently remove the pup, allow it to callous over for a day or two, and then plant it in a well-draining soil mix.
Your plant might be getting too much direct sunlight. While Aloe Vera can tolerate some direct light, intense sunlight can cause sunburn.
The gel inside Aloe Vera leaves can be applied topically for minor burns, sunburn, and to moisturize skin. However, test on a small patch of skin first to ensure you’re not allergic.
Aloe Vera prefers bright light. While it may tolerate lower light conditions, it won’t grow as well and may become leggy as it stretches towards the light.