Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Houseplant: Aloe Vera ( barbadensis)

Scientific name:          Aloe vera, also known as Aloe barbadensis

Explanation of scientific name:    (1)   Aloe - from the ancient Arabic name for the plant

vera - true or genuine

barbadensis -   from or of Barbados

The houseplant aloe vera is very common, that every household has one. Maybe,  the purpose of a quick remedy for sunburn, minor burns and itch or just because this plant will live no matter what you do with it.  I resist buying this plant, simply that it's  always available anywhere. However, for some reason, today, I brought home this plant. It  has a white speckles, unlike the common aloe vera that was around in my "lolas" garden.

It was heavily rootbound in a 4inch pot, so I upgraded it to a round 6 inch pot. This will  probably last for 6 months, unless a baby Aloe Vera appear on the side.

Caring for your Aloe Vera: (2) along with what I do with my own aloe vera

SOIL: fast draining & fertile (2)
I mixed 4 equal parts: perlite, tropical mix, play sand, perlite.
Add slow release fertilizer granules.

LIGHT: Tropical, needs sun and partial shade.
While this plant can benefit full sun, I don't have any right now. (Ottawa City here, we will have freezing rain. So, if you ask me, this plant is on top on one of my bookshelf, where a single living room light gives it sun. This plant has been around for 2,000 years, I bet it can survive a living room light or else it will vanish.

Needs little,  as root rot will occur if too much on the roots.
Small houseplant like mine can benefit 1/4 cup of water every other week (winter), and maybe 1/2 cup on sun shining season. Allhough this plant is said to be 95% water, I notice that its roots is not swollen (unlike Chlorophytum comosum aka spider plant), so I would suggest making sure that soil mix promotes easy drainage and pots should have a bottom hole. Any nice pot without a drainage is a recipe to kill your aloe. TREAT YOUR PLANTS ETHICALLY!

Scientific Classification: (3)

Kingdom:     Plantae
clade:     Angiosperms
clade:     Monocots
Order:     Asparagales
Family:     Xanthorrhoeaceae
Subfamily:     Asphodeloideae
Genus:     Aloe
Species:     A. Vera

Pictures: These are pictures of my own houseplant. These are not copyrighted, however, a  simple courtesy is appreciated if you want to use it.

Houseplant: Aloe Vera
Houseplant: Aloe vera (leaves)


(1) http://faculty.ucc.edu/biology-ombrello/pow/aloe_vera.htm
(2) http://www.thegardenhelper.com/aloe~vera.html
(3) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aloe_vera

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