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Aristaloe aristata (Lace Aloe)

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Scientific Name

Aristaloe aristata (Haw.) Boatwr. & J.C.Manning

Common Names

Lace Aloe, Guinea-fowl Aloe, Torch Plant

Synonyms

Aloe aristata (basionym), Aloe ellenbergeri, Aloe longiaristata, Tulista aristata

Scientific Classification

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

Description

Aristaloe aristata, formerly known as Aloe aristata, is a stemless, clump-forming succulent up to 12 inches (30 cm) tall. It forms dense rosettes of soft, toothed, dark green, white-margined and up to 4 inches (10 cm) long leaves. They have small white spots and soft white spines. In late spring to early summer, it produces terminal panicles, up to 20 inches (50 cm) tall, bearing cylindrical, orange-red and up to 1.6 inches (4 cm) long flowers.

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 7b to 10b: from 5 °F (−15 °C) to 40 °F (+4.4 °C).

How to Grow and Care

In order to grow Lace Aloe in temperate climates, it will need to be taken inside during the coldest weather. Keep it in bright sunlight during the summer. This species is hardier than many other species within its genus, but will still appreciate the warmth. Lace Aloe requires very little maintenance, making it an ideal choice for novice gardeners.

This genus is well known for its ease of cultivation, but species are sensitive to excessive irrigation. Provide regular watering in spring and summer to make the soil thoroughly moist then allow the soil to dry before watering again. In winter, during the dormant season, water sparingly or not at all, as it is prone to rotting. A thin layer of gravel on top of the soil will help to prevent this.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for a Lace Aloe (Aristaloe aristata).

Uses

The Pondo people use the juice of this succulent mixed with water to wash their bodies for its tonic and refreshing effect.

Origin

Aristaloe aristata is native to Lesotho and South Africa (Northern Cape, Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Free State, KwaZulu-Natal).

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