This article is for people wanting to know everything about how to take care of an indoor Aloe Vera plant. But first, let’s have a quick look at this amazing ‘lily of the desert’.
Aloe vera is a succulent species of plant from the genus Aloe. It’s an evergreen perennial and native to the Arabian Peninsula; however, it also grows in arid, tropical, and semi-tropical climates in various parts of the world.
It’s commonly grown for agricultural and medicinal purpose. Many people also use it for decoration and cultivate it indoors as a potted plant. It’s an amazing home or office plant that’s known to add a pleasant tropical feel to the atmosphere.
The juice from its leaves has long been used as a topical gel for relieving burns and cuts.
It usually doesn’t have stems and if it does, they’re short- they mostly grow somewhere between 60 to 100 cm in height.
Its leaves are thick and fleshy and their color varies from green to grey-green. In some species of the plant, the upper and lower surfaces of the stem may have white spots.
The plant produces flowers in summer on a spike up to 90 cm in height. Every flower is pendulous (hangs down loosely) and features a yellow tubular corolla.
Aloe vera is easy-to-take care of and like the mother in law tongue, is a very attractive succulent, making it a much loved indoor plant. Plus, it’s been deemed as one of the best indoor plants for air cleansing according to a study done by NASA.
The aloe vera plant is known to release oxygen at night, making it a great choice for bedrooms.
How to Care for Your Indoor Aloe Vera Plant
For an aloe vera plant to thrive outdoors, it needs full sun exposure, particularly in cloudier and cooler climate areas.
It’s best for the plant to have 6 to 8 hours of direct sun or to be in an area with light shade or filtered sun at midday.
This indoor plant need a high level of light. You can get it by placing your aloe within 3 feet of a shade-free window facing the south or the west.
If your home is in a cooler and cloudier climate or if it has mostly north or east facing windows, include led grow-lights to encourage growth.
Place it 1 to 2 feet above the plant in daylight or 16 hour per day.
Make sure you don’t overexpose it to light- it will show this through blanched leaves or stunted new growth.
Extra tip> use a light meter to learn more about the sunlight in your home before you place your plant.
Aloe Vera Plant Care- Temperature
Aloe vera plants need a temperature from 50 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit to thrive.
Indoors, the room should have a temperature of 60 to 75 degrees so that it grows optimally.
Water & Humidity
Being resistant to drought, aloe vera can survive with minimal water. However, if you don’t water it, you’ll lower its lifespan.
To water your aloe properly, it’s best to do it thoroughly and then allow the surplus water to drain through a good drainage system.
The next watering should be when the top inch of its soil is dry. If you’re under watering it, you’ll notice the tips of the leaves going brown.
Overwatering can lead to root rotting.
Every aloe plant needs sandy or gravelly soil that has a drainage system which helps lower the chance of root rotting and lack of nutrients.
In containers, use soil that’s a mixture of commercial potting mix with extra sand, perlite or granite grit.
You can also plant it in potting soil for cactuses.
Outdoors, make sure you place it in a sandy spot which can entirely dry out after rain. A raised bed or a slope may be a good solution for your outdoor aloe vera.
As long as you don’t do it excessively, fertilizing your aloe, especially if it’s in a container, will help keep it happy and healthy.
It’s best to stick with fertilization in the growing season, starting in spring. If you have an aloe outdoors, a single drench once in the spring will suffice for the year.
If it’s potted, opt for drenches once per month.
Use liquid 10-40-10 houseplant mixes or mixes for succulents. Stay away from the granular ones.
Repotting your aloe is vital for young plants that outgrow their space. First, you need to remove offsets and save them for propagation.
When it’s removed from the old pot, repot it in a cactus potting mixture.
The best periods for propagation are spring and summer. Eliminate offsets to avert the sap from escaping.
For propagation, you need a sandy potting mixture- you can make one at home by mixing equal amounts of all-purpose potting blend and sand split.
Best species of Aloe Vera
This is an evergreen succulent which turns green when it’s grown in a partial shade and glossy red when grown in full sun. In winter and spring, it releases green and yellow flowers.
One-of-a-kind aloe that creates rosette of bluish-green leaves. With its aging, the plant forms a spiral pattern, either clockwise or anticlockwise.
It flowers sporadically and when it does, it’s a beautiful sight.
This small hybrid variety is great for both indoor and outdoor plant collection. It has amazing dark orange color at the edges with toothed margins.
Aloe vera won’t just decorate your office or bedroom- it can be a regenerating first-aid kit for burns and cuts.
To use its healing gel, take out a mature leaf and cut it lengthwise and then squeeze out the gel. Apply it onto the wound or just lay the gel-side onto your burned or cut area.
This gel shouldn’t be ingested- it can lead to nausea and other side effects!
Trouble Shooting- an Aloe Vera Plant Care Problem
Problem: Creased leaves & weakness
Cause: Insufficient light may cause the plant to weaken and the leaves to become creased. Other symptoms of low light include pale leaves.
Solution: Move it to a sunnier area and an area with natural light.
Problem: Brown & Soft Leaves
Cause: If an aloe vera is growing healthy, its leaves will be fat and plump. When it’s not, the leaves may turn brownish and overly soft. This may be a consequence of overwatering.
Solution: Try watering the plant when it’s around ¾ dry. This is approximately every 2 to 4 weeks in summertime. In the wintertime, reduce the watering so that the plant can rest. Ensure the pot has holes for proper drainage.
Problem: Leaves with brown spots
Cause: Even though your aloe loves natural light when it’s growing indoors, you need to avoid placing it near hot glass. This can result in burned leaves with big brown/orange patches.
Solution: Remove the plant from direct exposure to high heat like a window that’s sun-exposed most of the day and place it in an area full of natural light, but not overly hot.
I do hope you have found this article interesting and helpful in learning how to care for an indoor Aloe Vera plant i
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