- Succulent usually grows slowly inside–purchase a large, mature one if possible. If a young one is your only option, it’s still suitable for first aid treatments–just know it will take a few years to get large.
- Young aloe is potent enough for health remedies, but the mature one offers a stronger potency, strength does increase as it ages.
General Care & Maintenance:
- It can be grown indoors or outdoors though it commonly turns brown in harsh sun so choose a location in indirect light.
- Will freeze, protect it during frost dangers. Not suitable for wintering over in cold weather zones.
- Thrives outside better than inside, yet still makes a good indoor houseplant.
- Choose well-drained sandy potting soil, a good quality commercial mix with extra perlite, granite grit, or coarse sand are added is recommended. Cacti and succulent mixes may also be used. Source: Wikipedia.
- Remember this is a succulent, don’t overwater.
- Allow the soil to become fairly dry. Water sparingly during winter months since the drying out will be slower.
- If potting, ensure there is a drainage hole so liquid drains easily.
- If it is rootbound, it gets top heavy and sends out more new shoots or pups, repot.
- Remove new shoots when they are 3 to 4 inches high and replant in their own pots. If you don’t, they suck life from the mother. Signs it’s happening: The mother becomes bright green and spreads horizontally rather than vertically.
- Water the pups well when repotting then don’t again for about 3 weeks, forcing the new roots to get strong and seek moisture. They may turn grey or brown initially which is normal. These make great gifts so give freely!
Symptoms Of Poor Care (Leaves):
- Lie flat instead of upright: usually because of insufficient light.
- Thin and curled: too dehydrated and now using up its own liquid.
- Are Brown: located in direct sun.
- Very slow growth: High alkaline soil or water; too damp for too long; not enough light; too much fertilizer.
- Harvest as you need, the wound is quickly sealed and healed. The leaf will not come back, choose those closest to the ground as they are the most mature and most potent.
For Health Treatments
For benefits and home remedies, see this page.
How To Cut:
- Slice with a clean, sharp knife.
- Trim the thorny edges from the severed piece, then slice across its width. The inner transparent, gooey gel is ready to be applied directly to the afflicted area. Use generously, it’s absorbed by the skin within several minutes.
- After the gel from the first layer of ruptured cells has run dry, scratch the surface with a clean knife to rupture more cells, releasing juice. Can be continued until there is nothing but green skin left.
How Long A Cut Piece Lasts:
- Wrap partially used slices in foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate, it will last for days.
- The colorless pulp is tasteless, but first rinse off the bitter yellow sap. Peel the green skin from the pulp, then rinse off the sap.
Source – More complete notes & information found in the booklet:
The Ancient Egyptian Medicine Plant Aloe Vera Hand Book
Author: Max B. Skousen