Plant Family / Aloes
Aloe can be mat-forming or shrubby evergreen perennials, with rosettes of fleshy leaves and some of the most spectacular blooms of any plants. Tubular, they attract hummingbirds and may last several weeks. Ranging from a few inches tall to trees, they offer a rich diversity of leaf shapes and colors. Unlike agaves, which die after blooming, Aloes flower year after year. Easy to grow, they look stunning in sunny borders or decorative pots.
A prolific miniature Aloe, Aloe 'Crosby's Prolific' is an evergreen succulent with attractive, stemless rosettes of lance-shaped, deep green leaves lined with long, translucent teeth along their edges. Its fleshy leaves take on red hues when exposed to bright light.
Prized for its colorful flowers and attractive foliage, Aloe arborescens (Torch Aloe) is an evergreen succulent shrub with branching stems holding many decorative rosettes. Each rosette consists of widely spreading, gray-green, sword-shaped leaves with conspicuous pale teeth along their edges.
Hardy and attractive, Aloe aristata (Torch Plant) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming charming rosettes, packed with fleshy, lance-shaped, incurved leaves with tufted tips. Pale green in the shade, the leaves turn dark green in full sun. Each leaf exhibits scattered white spots, raised near the base and becoming spiny towards the tips.
Well-known for the medicinal value of the juice of its leaves, Aloe barbadensis (Aloe vera) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming clumps of rosettes of long, fleshy, narrow, light green leaves with whitish to reddish toothed margins. The leaves turn reddish purple when the plant is under drought stress. I
Beloved for its attractive foliage, Aloe brevifolia (Short-Leaf Aloe) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming a carpet of decorative rosettes, 4in. wide (10 cm), with broadly triangular spreading fleshy leaves. Pale blue in light shade, the leaves turn rosy-pink and golden-yellow in full sun, creating a very pretty display.
One of the most Ornamental Aloes, Aloe broomii (Snake Aloe) is a robust, evergreen succulent perennial forming a large, short-stemmed, dense rosette of light green leaves, 1 ft. long (30 cm). They are adorned with reddish brown teeth along the edges, which curl interestingly along the outer edges of each leaf.
Regarded as one of the most attractive foliage Aloes, Aloe cameronii (Red Aloe) is an evergreen succulent with upright stems of open rosettes. The fleshy, gracefully curving leaves are a rainbow of colors ranging from green to a rich coppery red, depending on sun and water.
A stemless Aloe, Aloe capitata var. quarziticola is an evergreen succulent perennial forming a beautiful open rosette of fleshy, tapered, gray-green leaves, up to 18 in. long (45 cm). Milky blue-gray in cloudy conditions, the leaves turn purple-tinged with brighter exposure.
Incredibly eye-catching, Aloe dorotheae (Sunset Aloe) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming clumps of bright green rosettes in light shade but turning glossy bright red in full sun. The fleshy, shiny leaves are flecked with white and adorned with prominent teeth along their edges.
Native to South Africa, Aloe ferox (Cape Aloe) is a large and showy, evergreen succulent forming a dense rosette of blue-green, lance-shaped leaves, often flushed with rose, up to 3 ft. long (90 cm). Each leaf is adorned with dark brown spines along the edges and on the leaf surfaces, especially on the lower surface.
Aloe hereroensis (Sand Aloe) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming single erect rosettes, or a small clump or rosettes of smooth, pale blue-green leaves that curve inwards and are often rose-colored or bronzed in the sun. The leaves are adorned with H-shaped whitish spots arranged in transverse bands on the lower surface.
Prized for its colorful flowers and interesting foliage, Aloe maculata (Soap Aloe) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming small rosettes of thick, sword-shaped, white spotted leaves adorned with sharp teeth along their edges. Pinkish red in full sun, the foliage turns bluish-green in part shade.
Adding a majestic presence to the garden, Aloe marlothii (Mountain Aloe) is a large evergreen succulent forming a dense rosette of fleshy, grayish green leaves, up to 5 ft. long (150 cm), with a broad base tapering to a sharp point. They are covered with reddish-brown spines along the edges and randomly on their upper and lower surfaces.
One of the most floriferous Aloes in South Africa, Aloe microstigma (Cape Speckled Aloe) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming solitary or small clumps of beautiful rosettes of blue-green leaves, which warm up to reddish brown if suffering from environmental stress. The leaves are adorned with conspicuous white spots, which contrast nicely with the reddish teeth along the edges.
Vigorous, Aloe nobilis (Golden Toothed Aloe) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming a carpet of decorative rosettes, 12in. wide (30 cm), with broadly triangular, fleshy leaves. Bright green in light shade, the leaves turn amazingly orange when in full sun, creating a very pretty display.
Unique with its fan-like leaf arrangement, Aloe plicatilis (Fan Aloe) forms a remarkable shrub or small tree. At the end of branched stems, the fleshy, strap-shaped, round-tipped, blue-gray leaves, about 1 ft. long (30 cm), are stacked in pairs and are reminiscent of fans.
Absolutely fascinating, Aloe polyphylla (Spiral Aloe) is a compact evergreen succulent valued for its foliage arranged in a perfect spiral pattern. The fleshy gray-green leaves form a tight rosette that becomes a beautiful spiral, either clockwise or counterclockwise, as the plant ages. A plant can count up to 150 leaves geometrically arranged in 5 ranks.
Aloe rubroviolacea (Arabian Aloe) is a particularly beautiful evergreen succulent forming rosettes of thick leaves which arch gracefully outward. Blue-green in partial shade, with contrasting reddish teeth and margins, the leaves get purple tinged in full sun, a coloration which intensifies to violet-red hues in winter.
Aloe speciosa (Tilt-head Aloe) is a large and showy, evergreen succulent forming a decorative rosette of long and slender, blue-green leaves, often tinged pink at the tips and edges, up to 3 ft. long (90 cm). Each leaf is adorned with small, pale to deep red, soft teeth. What makes this species easy to distinguish is the tendency of its rosette to lean toward greatest sun exposure
More frost hardy than most Aloes, Aloe striata (Coral Aloe) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming beautiful rosettes of flat broad leaves. Pale gray-green, the fleshy leaves warm up to pink in full sun or take on blue-gray hues in the shade. Toothless, the leaves exhibit subtle narrow stripes along their length and transparent pinkish red margins.
Resembling an octopus, Aloe vanbalenii (Van Balen's Aloe) is an evergreen succulent perennial forming striking stemless rosettes of long, deeply channelled, gracefully twisting and curling leaves. Bright green with copper-red edges in the shade, the fleshy leaves warm up to orange or dark red shades in full, hot sun with minimum water.
One of the showiest of the tall Aloes, Aloe vaombe (Malagasy Tree Aloe) is a large evergreen succulent perennial forming a beautiful solitary rosette of curved, long, shiny, dark rich green leaves. The fleshy leaves are adorned with white teeth and turn vibrant deep red in winter or with bright exposure.
Aloe x principis is a large evergreen succulent perennial forming a small tree bearing rosettes of dark blue-green leaves on several trunks. In winter to spring, a branched inflorescence rises above the foliage to display dense spikes of brilliant, scarlet to orange, tubular flowers, brightening up the dull winter garden.
Native to sub-Saharan Africa, Madagascar, and Arabia, Aloes are evergreen succulents with usually spiny leaves arranged in neat rosettes, and spectacular, candle-like inflorescences bearing clusters of brilliant yellow, orange or red, tubular flowers. They exist in a wide range of sizes, colors and offer an amazing array of leaf shapes.