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Gonialoe variegata (Tiger Aloe)

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Scientific Name

Gonialoe variegata (L.) Boatwr. & J.C.Manning

Common Names

Tiger Aloe, Partridge Breast Aloe, Partridge-Breasted Aloe

Synonyms 

Aloe variegata (basionym), Aloe ausana, Aloe punctata, Tulista variegata

Scientific Classification

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

Description 

Gonialoe variegata, formerly known as Aloe variegata, is a small, stemless succulent, up to 12 inches (30 cm) tall and up to 9 inches (23 cm) wide, with 18 to 24 smooth dark-green or brown leaves arranged in 3 ranks. Each leaf is up to 6 inches (15 cm) long and up to 2.4 inches (6 cm) wide, irregularly variegated, alternately dark green and whitish. The leaf margins are sporadically armed with tiny, white teeth. The inflorescence is a raceme and is mostly branched with hanging flowers. The flowers are relatively large, up to 18 inches (45 cm) long, usually orange with green edges, but may vary from a flesh-pink to dull-red and rarely yellow.

Photo via gardenweb.com

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zone 9a to 11b: from 20 °F (−6.7 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Tiger Aloe has the same requirements as Aloes. The plant is suited for warmer zones and may be taken outside in summer in cooler areas. Don't forget to bring it in when cold temperatures are approaching, as the plant is only hardy in USDA hardiness zone 9 to 11. The majority of gardeners will find it easier to grow the plant inside alone in a container or as part of a succulent display.

Water deeply but rarely and let the soil dry out between watering. The plant grows slowly but should be repotted every 3 years in a cacti and succulent soil mix. The biggest problem that occurs with Tiger Aloe is overwatering, which can cause the plant to rot.

A fun thing about these plants is their ability to produce fully vegetative babies or offsets for propagation. Divide these away from the parent plant and place them in a container. They will root quickly and provide you with more of this amazing plants to populate your landscape.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for a Tiger Aloe (Gonialoe variegata).

Origin

Gonialoe variegata is native to South Africa (Eastern Cape, Free State, Northern Cape, Western Cape) and Namibia.

Subspecies, Varieties, Forms, Cultivars and Hybrids

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