Aloe spinous: a handsome succulent and 2 ways of reproduction
Remaining an ordinary succulent, in its genus Asfodelovye aloe, the spinous (aloe aristata) is one of the first places in terms of decorativeness. In England, his name sounds like "lace aloe", and among the people, because of fiery inflorescences, he was nicknamed the torch plant.
Range and description of appearance
In Latin transcription, the name of the plant sounds like an aristat, or "bristly". The main area is vast territories in eastern South Africa to the province of KwaZulu-Natal and throughout Lesotho. On these lands, deserts are replaced by forests and high-altitude meadows, to which the original succulent perfectly adapts.
According to the botanical classification, this type of aloe is classified as a bushy herbaceous plant. Its stems are maximally shortened and assembled into rosettes with a circumference of 10-15 cm. Up to 12 rosettes can be on one bush.
Outlets are narrowly linear, decorated with teeth, leaves 8-10 cm long and up to 1.5 cm wide.
In addition to the teeth, as seen in the photo, the leaves are dotted with small white convex points, painted in bluish-green tones.
The plant blooms in November, releasing a long peduncle, the crown of which are racemose inflorescences with numerous red-orange tubular flowers. At room content, the flowering period shifts to spring.
Room care guidelines
Adapted to live in different climatic conditions, Aloe spinous pleases with its unpretentiousness and owners of home flower gardens. Care at home for him is not difficult.
The flower feels great in the summer heat, calmly relates to placement on balconies and loggias, loves fresh air. However, the slightest draft is perceived negatively. In summer, he is satisfied with any temperature, but 24 ... 28 ° C are considered comfortable.
Favorable for winter time temperature in the range of 12 ... 18 ° C. A drop in temperature to +10 ° C slows down the growth of aloe and provokes diseases.
Succulent, accustomed to drought, categorically does not accept excess moisture. You need to water it when the soil has dried to a depth of 1.5 cm.
When watering, it is important not to get water on the outlet and the base of the leaves, the stream should go strictly under the root of the plant. Water is taken warm and settled.
Advice! Aloe loves loose soil, so be sure to loosen the soil after watering.
The optimum moisture content is 50%. Spraying the flower is not required, but what you need to do, so sometimes wipe the leaves with a damp cloth. In winter, watering is reduced to 1 time per month.
Proper lighting is an important parameter for the successful flowering of spinous aloe. There is not much light for him; he loves good lighting. When choosing a place for a flower, give preference to southern and western windows.
Given the beautiful appearance of the plant and the absence of long stems, we can safely say that it does not need pruning. As a cosmetic procedure, dried lower leaves are removed.
Experts recommend feeding the plant with traditional fertilizers for succulents. They are introduced into the growing season, making a nutrient solution. Once in the spring you can feed aloe with organic fertilizer.
Important! When applying fertilizer, liquid must not be allowed to fall onto the leaves.
Which pot to take?
Spinous aloe pot should be 2 cm larger than the size of the outlet. Since the roots of the plant are located superficially relative to the soil, the height of the tank does not matter much. Required holes for outflow of moisture.
Soil and transplant features
For well-being, the succulent needs loose earth. The peat, sand, sheet and turf ground should be included in the planting substrate in equal parts. For aeration of the roots, pieces of charcoal, fine gravel, and brick chips are introduced into the soil.
At the bottom of the pot pour a 4-cm layer of drainage. The plant is placed so that the root neck is located in the center of the pot, sprinkled with soil.
Up to 3 years, the plant is transplanted annually, later you can transplant 1 time in 2-3 years. The reasons for an unplanned transplant are the following reasons:
- the soil is infected with pests;
- the soil has subsided, the roots are bare;
- the plant gave rise to many processes.
In winter, the plant can not be transplanted, so as not to cause him stress.
Advice! To increase the decorative appearance of the plant on the soil surface, you can lay large pebbles or rounded pebbles.
Read more about aloe spinous transplant:
Two methods of propagation are suitable for spinous aloe: cuttings and leaf. It is possible with seeds, but first you need to get them, then hope for good germination and wait a long time when they sprout.
This method is used by most gardeners. Cuttings are selected during the growing season:
- At the base of the outlet, a stalk is cut, on which there are already a couple of new leaves.
- The slice is treated with charcoal and the stalk is left to dry for 4–5 days.
- After drying, the processes are planted in a container with sand, deepening the root part by 1 cm. Cover with a film, put on a windowsill, protecting from direct sunlight. Periodically watered.
The first signs of rooting in the form of young leaves can be expected after 3 weeks.
With this method of propagation, the lower leaves of the rosette are cut off from the plant. Slices are smeared with activated carbon or charcoal powder. Leaflets are dried for 3-4 days.
Soil for cacti and succulents is poured into the container for planting, moisturized well. The leaves are slightly buried.
In the first month they are watered little by little every day. Then the frequency of watering is reduced to 1 time in 2 days. The formed young outlet with 4-5 leaves is transferred to a separate pot.
Attention! Propagation by leaf cuttings does not always lead to a successful result: not all leaves are rooted, some part rot.
Diseases and Pests
Most of the diseases of Aloe spinosa are the sad result of poor care:
- Root rot. The consequence of excessive watering. Sick aloe stops growing. To correct the situation, it is necessary to remove the plant from the pot, examine its roots and remove the rotten parts. Sprinkle wounds with charcoal and transfer the flower to a pot with soil, where the proportion of sand is increased.
- Dry rot. The disease does not manifest itself with characteristic external signs, so it is difficult to take measures to combat it. The plant, as a rule, dies.
A striking indicator of health problems is a change in the appearance of the leaves:
- Drying leaf tips indicates a lack of space to the roots. A flower transplant helps to fix the problem.
- Thin and stretched up leaves signal that the aloe does not have enough sun (if they turn to the light source) or not enough moisture.
- Leaf redness speaks of an overabundance of lighting.
- With a lack of nutrients leaves are covered with brown spots, and their tips turn yellow. The plant needs to be fed.
- Leaf fall associated with watering with cold water.
Harmful to aloe insects are no different from those that attack other indoor plants. The methods of dealing with them are identical:
- Mealybug (pictured above). Recognized by white lumps similar to cotton balls. Lumps are recommended to be removed with a cloth moistened with alcohol. Next, the plant is treated with insecticides ("Confidor", "Actara").
- Thrips leave silver streaks on the leaves. You can get rid of pests with the help of a two-time treatment (1 time per week) with a chemical agent (Fitoftor, Actellik).
- Shields able to puncture aloe leaves and drink juice from them. From these manipulations, the leaves are covered with a sticky liquid. Pests can be removed with the help of a soap solution, which needs to wash the entire plant.
To destroy the spider mite, special preparations are used - acaricides (Karbofos, Actellik).
Benefits and healing properties
Aloe juice and leaves have been used for medicinal and cosmetic purposes since ancient times.
The medicinal properties of the plant are in demand in many areas of medicine:
- For disinfection and quick healing the pulp of the leaves is applied to wounds, burns and abrasions. Possessing anti-inflammatory action, it draws out pus and destroys microbes. The leaf is cut lengthwise and applied with the inner surface to the damaged area. Several such procedures are required.
- For colds take aloe juice mixed with honey and lemon juice. The same tool can be used to treat gastrointestinal diseases.
- In the cosmetics industry useful properties of the flower are actively used in shampoos for hair and nourishing creams for the skin of the face.
Aloe-based drugs are used in dentistry, gynecology, ophthalmology.