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Aloe arborescens (Torch Aloe)

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Scientific Name

Aloe arborescens Mill.

Common Names

Torch Aloe, Torch Plant, Candelabra Aloe, Octopus Plant, Tree Aloe, Mountain Bush Aloe, Krantz Aloe

Synonyms

Aloe arborescens subsp. arborescens, Aloe fructicosa, Aloe perfoliata var. arborescens, Catevala arborescens

Scientific Classification

Family: Asphodelaceae
Subfamily: Asphodeloideae
Tribe: Aloeae
Genus: Aloe

Description

Aloe arborescens is a large, sprawling succulent up to 10 feet (3 m) tall, with many, up to 18 inches (45 cm) wide rosettes of narrow, soft-toothed, margined, dull green, yellowish or sometimes blue-green leaves. The flowers are deep orange, almost red (there are also pure yellow forms) and hang tightly on unbranched inflorescence that rises up to 2 feet (60 cm) above the foliage.

Photo via giardinaggio.it

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Torch Aloe is an easy and rewarding plant to grow and is a popular garden plant in many countries. It enjoys full sun, well-drained, compost-enriched soil and can tolerate moderate frost but is sensitive to severe frost. It is fast-growing and it will tolerate drought and neglect once established. It is grown mainly as an ornamental or as an accent plant, but is also an excellent and impenetrable hedge plant.

During the active growth period water plentifully as often as necessary to keep the potting soil thoroughly moist. During the rest period water only enough to prevent the soil from drying out. Apply standard liquid fertilizer every 2 weeks during the active growth period.

It grows well in normal room temperatures and is tolerant of dry air. To encourage flowering, however, it is best to give the plants a short winter rest at a temperature of no more that 50 °F (10 °C).

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for a Torch Aloe (Aloe arborescens).

Origin

Aloe arborescens is native to the south eastern part of southern Africa (South Africa, Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe).

Subspecies, Varieties, Forms, Cultivars and Hybrids

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