People have been growing aloe vera plants (Aloe barbadensis) for literally thousands of years. It is one of the most widely used medicinal plants on the planet. If you are wondering, “How can I grow an aloe plant,?” I am here to tell you that taking care of an aloe plant in your home is easy. Keep reading to learn more about how to care for an aloe vera plant.
How to Grow an Aloe Plant
The first step in aloe vera plant care is to realize that this plant is a succulent. Like cacti, succulents do best in dry conditions. When growing aloe vera plants, plant them in a cactus potting soil mix or a regular potting soil that has been amended with additional perlite or building sand. Also, make sure that the pot has plenty of drainage holes. Aloe vera plants cannot tolerate standing water. One important thing in the care of aloe vera houseplants is that they have proper light. Aloe vera plants need bright light, so they do best in south- or west-facing windows.
Care of Aloe Houseplants
Another important aspect of how to grow an aloe plant is to water the plant properly. The soil of the aloe vera plant should be allowed to go completely dry before being watered. When the aloe plant is watered, the soil should be thoroughly drenched, but the water should be allowed to drain freely from the soil. The most common reason an aloe plant dies is that the owners water too often, or do not allow the water to drain. Do not make this mistake when taking care of aloe houseplants. You can fertilize your aloe vera plant, but aloes generally don’t need to be fertilized. If you decide to add fertilizing to part of your aloe vera plant care routine, aloe vera plants should be fertilized once a year in the spring. You can use a phosphorus-heavy, water-based fertilizer at half strength. Growing aloe vera houseplants is not only easy but can also provide your family with a plant that can help treat minor burns and rashes. Now that you know a little more about how to care for an aloe vera plant, you need never be without this lovely and helpful plant.
Aloe, from which we get an excellent burn ointment, is a succulent plant. Succulents and cacti are remarkably forgivable and quite easy to propagate. Aloe plants produce offsets, also known as pups, as part of their growth cycle. Dividing aloe plants away from the parent produces a whole new aloe to enjoy. Here is a brief tutorial on how to divide aloe plants.
Can You Split an Aloe Plant?
While you can divide an aloe, dividing aloe plants is not quite the same as dividing a perennial or ornamental grass. This is usually as simple as cutting the root zone in half and, ta-da, you have a new plant. Aloe plant division is accomplished by removing the offsets, which are the baby plants at the base of the parent. The process takes just moments and rejuvenates the parent while providing a new aloe start to propagate. When to Separate Aloe Plants As with any plant, timing is everything for any invasive action. Late winter and early spring produce a period of fairly inactive growth, which is when to separate aloe plants for the least damage to the root system. Aloes are pretty hardy, so if you fail to remove the pups in early spring, they will likely take it pretty well even in the growing season. Reduce the light levels for a week before trying aloe plant division on actively growing succulents. This will help slow down the plants’ growth and metabolism, and produce a better result.
When to Separate Aloe Plants
As with any plant, timing is everything for any invasive action. Late winter and early spring produce a period of fairly inactive growth, which is when to separate aloe plants for the least damage to the root system. Aloes are pretty hardy, so if you fail to remove the pups in early spring, they will likely take it pretty well even in the growing season. Reduce the light levels for a week before trying aloe plant division on actively growing succulents. This will help slow down the plants’ growth and metabolism, and produce a better result.
How to Divide Aloe Plants
The process is quite easy and will only take a few moments. The parent plant needs to be removed from its pot, so this is a good time to replant it and fill the container with fresh soil. Use a cactus mix of three parts mixed with one part potting soil. Remove the parent plant from its container and brush away soil and rock from the base and root system. Locate a healthy pup with a few roots and carefully cut it away from the parent with a clean, sharp knife. Sometimes, you don’t need a knife and the pup will just pull away from the parent. Lay the offset in a warm, dim room to callus on the end for two days before planting.
Planting Aloe Pups
The callus is simply to prevent the new plant from rotting in the soil. Once the end of the pup is dry, select a container that is just slightly larger than the pup. Fill it with a gritty potting mix and scoop out a small depression in the top to insert the pup’s roots. Do not water until the roots have taken and begun to grow, usually two weeks from planting. Keep the pot in bright but indirect light where temperatures are warm.