Aloe is one of the most ancient additions to modern-day gardens and one of the first truly medicinal plants.  It’s also beautifully diverse!  Aloe vera is the most prolific desert plant in my garden! Under the right conditions, you won’t even have to water these succulent beauties.  But be careful- the wrong conditions will kill them quick!  Here are four simple tips to get your aloe to thrive.

• A semi-shady location: We’ve found that aloe plants love a bit of nice shade, especially in the afternoon. to be quite versatile in the landscape and can tolerate locations between full sun and partial shade form A and E micro-climates work best! My best patches grow under trees or on the east side of large bushes where they get shade in the afternoon.

• Soil: For aloe, it needs to drain well and not be too fertile. Aloe is very susceptible to roots rotting if soil is too wet and too rich.  Remember, it’s a desert plant so native soil is fine so long as it drains and in a pot- a cactus mix will do the trick.

• Healthy start: Best grown from starts that have already rooted but even a cutting, with the tip dried then planted in semi-moist soil can root-out into a new plant.

• Water: If it’s green, its good… they start to grey and curl if too dry and torn black at the base if too wet. If you plant them under a tree that’s already getting water you can just plant it and forget about it! It can be that simple! But, please, do check on it daily for the first two weeks and water it well right after you plant it.

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