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Cactus SucculentConservatory Greenhouse

Aloe ferox

Cape aloe

An evergreen, succulent shrub with a woody stem crowned by a rosette of sword-shaped, blue-green leaves with reddish-brown spines along the leaf margins. An erect, branching spike of orange-red, bell-shaped flowers is borne in spring

Other common names
bitter aloe
red aloe

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Size
Ultimate height
2.5–4 metres
Time to ultimate height
5–10 years
Ultimate spread
1.5–2.5 metres
Growing conditions
Loam
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Orange Red Blue Green
Summer Blue Green
Autumn Blue Green
Winter Blue Green
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H1B
Botanical details
Family
Asphodelaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Evergreen
Habit
Columnar upright
Potentially harmful
Human/Pets (dogs, cats, rabbits): Harmful if eaten. Wear gloves and other protective equipment when handling For further information and contact numbers regarding pets, see the HTA guide to potentially harmful plants
Genus

Aloe can be mat-forming or shrubby evergreen perennials, with rosettes of fleshy leaves and small tubular flowers in racemes or panicles

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Southern Africa

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow indoors in a container of cacti potting compost, or loam-based potting compost with added horitcultural grit. Water moderately when in growth, very sparingly when dormant in winter. Apply a general liquid fertiliser monthly from May to August. Can be placed outdoors in summer, see aloe cultivation for further advice

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown with heat as soon as ripe or from offsets in late spring or early

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Architectural
  • Sub-tropical
  • Conservatory and greenhouse
Pruning

No pruning required

Pests

May be susceptible to scale insects and mealybugs

Diseases

Generally disease-free

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