They have been flowering from about the beginning of February here in the Phoenix area. I took some of these pictures a month ago, but thankfully I have been very busy with design work. The Aloe always reminds me of spring here. I can’t help but get excited when I see the stalks growing up and budding out Yellow and Orange all over town.
Some Aloe around town look really ratty. Burned tips, purple and grey tones and very little green they look like they need to be watered badly. They might, but chances are your looking at an Aloe planted in full sun. If you buy an aloe from a retail nursery the plant care tag may tell you, “Plant in full sun to part shade”. Don’t believe it. In Phoenix Aloe are happiest in part sun or filtered sun conditions. Mid-day and afternoon shade works well, too.
Aloe Vera - Aloe Barbadensis - Medicinal Aloe
Most Aloe is native to Africa, but I hear that some Aloe Vera – Barbadensis is native to Central and South America, the Cannary Islands, Jamaica mon (he he), and Bardados, hence the name. This is the medicinal variety that has been used by doctors, folk healers and clever mothers to treat burns, bites, inflammation, and to prevent infection. The Yellow Aloe Vera is the most effective, but Aloe Vera Orange works almost as well.
The height of the leaves is about 2’ to 3’ and the stalks can reach up to 5’. Aloe Vera clumps freely, so to keep it looking good (my opinion here) I pull off the little suckers and give them away.