Transplanting an Aloe Vera plant. Help!

donna_16(6A-6B)March 5, 2012

Ok, so I inherited my grandma's aloe vera plant and it desperately needs to be replanted. I am SO scared of doing something wrong when replanting. It is so big I can't even take it out of the stand because it has grown all around it. It has really big crowns because it's been growing down out of the pot on both sides. It's starting to die and it is so sentimental - it's over 33 years old!!

Can I replant it with some of the crown being under the soil?

I attached a picture. All suggestions are greatly appreciated!

Here is a link that might be useful:

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Here are a few suggestions. I would first work towards getting the plant more light. Aloes like a lot of sun, but I think your grandma's plant would need to slowly work up to the full sun that aloes like so that it didn't get sunburned. When it was used to sun more I would take cuttings of the tops, using a fast draining, gritty mix for the plant. The peaty medium that it is in isn't the best for succulents. The bottom of the plant might keep trying to grow as well. I would cut it down to the soil line, and if it grew back, you could then remove the spent peat soil and repot in better mix later. I would try to put the plants outside in the summer, getting them used to the conditions slowly. Water only when the soil is really dry.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 11:57PM
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Thanks for your response! What does "cutting it down to the soil line" and "take cuttings of the tops" mean? Don't you have to transplant the roots too? Sorry, I'm fairly new to this.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 11:21AM
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Hi Donna,

Cutting down to he soil line means, cutting your Aloe nearest the soil. When you're through, you'll have a pot w/little nubs/greens in one hand, and two Aloe plants in another.

Taking cuttings off the tops means removing upper leaves. Leaves root in soil.

As Aseed said, Aloes need a lot of light. What type of light was your gramma's Aloe getting the last 33-years?

If the Aloe was in a window, do you know which direction it faced? Aloes do best in south or west, and if possible, summer outdoors. Weather permitting.

Yep, when a plant is repotted, roots and plant go in a new pot. In most cases, one to two sizes larger than its current container.

If/when you repot, a well-draining mix should be used. Aloe is succulent which means leaves hold water. When a succulent sits in constantly wet soil or overwatered, it rots.
This is the reason well-draining soil is necessary.

There are several soil recipies available here on GW. Some people use bagged soils amended with sand, stones, Perlite, etc, others use one called gritty mix.

Do you think you can cut back your grams 33-yr Aloe? It'd be difficult to do, but if it helps, that's the best way to go.

If it was my Aloe, I'd take cuttings, and root. Slip the entire plant out of its pot. If roots fill the pot, it'd go in a larger container.

When leaves root, I'd add them back w/mom plant for a more compact look.


    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 12:51PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)


I'll try to post more later, but pls. note:

Aloes do not root from leaves, ever. So don't remove upper leaves & look to root them, sorry, but will not happen.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 3:42PM
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Thanks for your response too!!

I believe the plant was facing west at Grandma's place. I currently have the plant in the basement in a south facing room. But, on the ground because of the stand. I am wanting to replant to pots so I can get them closer to the window and warmth.

Oh wow, so you basically lob it off without roots and stick the whole green part in a pot? How much stem should you have beneath the soil for the actual aloe plant in order for it to root and grow? I understand what cutting back means now, but still a little unsure where to cut it back on the plant. Does cutting the top mean the very tip, or the top meaning above/at the soil line?

I bought some cactus soil, potting soil and also have some Vermiculite. Would that work?

Sorry for all the questions again. I just don't want to mess this up!!

Thank you for your time and answers!

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 3:45PM
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What I meant was to cut off the leaves part leaving about an inch or two of stem at the bottom. Then cut off the stem that is left at the soil line. You would then have an extra piece of stem left from the middle. That way you would have two chances to get this right for your grandma's plant, rooting the tops, and letting the original roots to regrow.

Thanks Toni for elaborating. It was pretty late when I typed that, and it isn't clear.

I would use the cactus soil over the potting soil. However, vermiculite holds water. What you want is something that drains, so really coarse sand or perlite even would be better to add.

Actually, what pirategirl says is true. I don't think that Toni was really meaning to root just a leaf, but rather to lop off the top with some stem attached and those pieces with stem attached could be rooted. Put them in some plain perlite, so they really don't rot while waiting for the roots to come, and then you could transplant them into the same pot when you repot the original roots-and-base. I think pirategirl will have some good comments later.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 5:21PM
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aseedisapromise: no worries, I'm new at this so it was me not understanding properly! :)

Ahhhh ok, this is all making better sense. Thanks everyone!

I will plant the aloe leaves with the 1-2 inch cut stem in a pot one to two times bigger than the plant itself. This will be planted in a cactus/perlite mix. And put the stem that you want to root (middle) in straight perlite - and then add to original roots. So if this all turns out I should have 2 tops, 2 middles, and 2 bottoms (original roots), right?

Approx how long should the tops take to root? And once I transplant the top & stem how long should I take to water it?

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 9:17PM
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No, I would root the tops in maybe plain perlite alone, and in as small a pot as I could get to stand up with the plant balanced on it. You don't need a lot of water around the stem base while the plant is rooting, and too large a pot and peat soil will encourage rot. I would also let the cut tops sit out for a while to callus over before I put them into the rooting medium. I would keep the plants warm, like 70 degrees and keep them not in direct sunlight while they are rooting. I generally put my rooting plants into a covered plastic box under a fluorescent light, so the rooting medium never really dries out by the time they are rooted. I don't think that Aloe vera really needs this, though.

I'm not sure as to the length of time rooting takes, but I don't remember it as being very long. If it does take a while, check to see if the perlite is still moist, but not wet. You will know rooting is happening when the plant gets new leaf growth. Then is a good time to start putting them slowly into more and more sunlight.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 9:43AM
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OMG!! I'm so scared this plant it going to die on me while doing this! Is it ok to put the bottoms (original roots) in the cactus/perlite mix? Thanks SO MUCH for all your help!

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 10:01AM
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Hi Donna...Yesterday, I had a doc appt, and was in a rush.
To top that off, when discussing cuttings, etc, one 'assumes' people know what parts need be removed.
My fault. You said you were new to plants.

A shoot/offspring is used to propagate Aloe Vera. As far as I know, one leaf iteself will not root. Should have mentioned this yesterday when I responded. So sorry.

Aseed, thanks for
The only time I've cut a leaf from Aloe Vera was to rub on a burn or skin. lol.

Donna, don't be scared..'although I'd be, too,' lol. Especially with a 33-yr old plant.

Whatever care you family gave the Aloe, they did an incredible job. 33=yrs is a long time, Donna.

Have you had time to unpot and check roots? If so, are they filling the pot?

To Karen:

Karen, although I've never heard of rooting Aloe by one single leaf, please read this article. Don't know if it's true, but the author writes:

Growing Aloe Vera From Cuttings
A visitor to this gardening blog e-mailed me to ask if it was possible to propagate and grow Aloe vera from cuttings. Honestly, I've never tried it but everything I've read about Aloes indicates that they can't be propagated through leaf cuttings. But it is possible to propagate an Aloe vegetatively by removing a pup or by rhizome cuttings though.

"But there are the Aloe vera hybrids that have been crossed with related succulents like my xGasteraloe 'Green Ice' which is reported to be a cross between a Gasteria 'Old Man Silver' x Aloe variegata. When I bought that plant there was one leaf that was much larger than the whole plant and has now died, that's a big clue that it was propagated by a leaf cutting."

If you happen across my blog and you don't find the answer to the question you were looking for try the search boxes on the right or e-mail me through my profile. If I know the answer I'll gladly let you know and if I don't I can probably point you in the right direction.
You might also like:

The author is Mr. Brown Thumb, 'whoever he'
Page is,

BTW, Donna, if a pup is present, 'didn't see one,' and it was removed, cutting the pup wouldn't harm mom. Toni

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 11:46AM
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Thanks Toni! No worries, I was just a little confused and I want to make sure I have all the facts straight before I hack off the plant.

There is no pup and the roots are all that the pot is - i.e. the roots are lifted from the bottom of the pot because of the two plants pulling down on them. It fell over a couple times when we were cleaning out the apartment. What is left of the dirt is all in the roots, so there is basically one big ball of roots which I'm unsure how to untangle or if I do at all? I want to try and get the stem(s) more upright so it doesn't grow sideways again. Not sure if any of that makes sense!! So, yes 33 years of roots is filling the pot. And the roots come right out!

I'll attach a closer look. I better replant this quick or there won't be anything left!!

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 2:14PM
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Don't untangle.

One thing you can do is, using a sharp knife, cut stright in center roots. This way you'll have two plants.
Pot each section in two different pots.
I know it sounds harsh and scary, but I've cut into roots w/different plants, and never lost one.

When potting, hold Aloe with one hand, fill w/medium in the other so each stand erect.
Just an idea. Toni

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 3:47PM
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Ok, so I think I'm ready to do this!!!

So, cut the top 1-2 inches below last aloe leaf. Allow to callus over in 70 degree air. Then transplant in smallest pot the plant will allow without falling over in PURE perlite. Do this x2.

Then, cut stem just above soil line and also cut straight down the middle of bottom (original roots) to separate the two. Allow to callus over and then replant in cactus/perlite mix.

There should be two middle pieces of the stems that I will callus over and then plant in a small container in pure perlite.

Wait awhile before watering.

^^ Is that correct?

WISH ME LUCK!!! And I will of course keep you posted on this 34 year old (in August) plant. If it's anything like my Grandma it definitely has the will to live! :D

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 3:59PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi Donna,

I don't have a lot of time right now, but if you haven't started yet, pls. switch over to the Cactus & Succulent Forum, (C&S for short), next door sort of & read some threads there on Aloes, especially one now on Aloe Vera. There's lots there to read about Aloes, their mixes & care & culture. There's also a helpful FAQ there too (at the top of that page) on Aloes & their care.

Pls. don't be scared, no one has yet told you these are rough & scrappy plants, which often grow in bad conditions & crappy soil & they do fine. The only thing you could really do wrong in this story is to water the plants, so as long as you don't do that, they should be fine. You'll need some patience, I forget how long it'll take these to root, But don't be fooled into thinking if you water them it'll help, it won't.

In the world of succulents (which these Aloes are) we tell folks about watering: when in doubt, don't.

Am sorry to say (I know it was your Grama's) that all that neglect has taken a toll on the plants. I wouldn't bother w/ the roots at all (not worth it in my opinion).

I would only take the trouble (if it were me) to re-root the two actual plants.

Also, I'm not clear on rooting the segments of the stem, have never heard of this & doubt it will work, but certainly, there's no harm in trying.

Aseedis (are we allowed to use your given name, or can we use an acronym?) I know it's you, who gifted me w/ the 'real thing' 'cause you wanted me to have one (that's coming along, slowly but surely, ;>)). It wasn't you who was unclear or left the impression one could root Aloes off their leaves.

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 6:31PM
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I already did it! :O I really hope it takes root and thrives!!

How long should I let them callus over for?

Thank you all so much for the answers, and I will be sure to check out that forum. :D

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 9:51PM
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To pirategirl, I just mentioned that the roots could also grow just to make extra chances that some part of this aloe would make it, since it was an heirloom. It seems that for a new-to-aloe person, experimenting with things isn't a bad thing, but a way to really get into it more. But we who have had many aloes don't really need to save every piece of every plant. It seems that most folks just refer to me as aseed here on the forums, and that is fine with me. Barb is okay, too. I've been that too. Much shorter, but to the point.

To donna,

I think that if you can just not water the aloe cuttings like pirategirl was saying, then letting them callus over isn't necessary, so you wouldn't have to wait if you are rooting it in dry medium. But if you are going to stick it into the purchased cactus soil, then I would wait until it looks dry and maybe a little shrunken around the edges of the cut place. But don't water it. Do take what pirategirl said to heart, these are tough plants. I haven't really rooted one that wasn't a pup with roots attached since I was new at this myself. I think that for many people rooting aloe cuttings, or maybe jade cuttings are often a first succulent experience. Do check out what there is to find over at the cacti and succulent forum. Lots of good folks and info over there.

Here is a link that might be useful: Aloe FAQ from the C & S page

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 11:04PM
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And as asiap notes, there's an excellent FAQ, written for real folks like donna, over at the C&S Forum - we know Aloes there, or think we do.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 8:57AM
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Thank you!!!

Yes, I'm going to try and replant every piece of this heirloom - one is bound to survive if they are hardy. :) The cut pieces look shrunken and dry this morning so I will put the roots in the cactus/perlite mix. The root on the plant itself feels dry, but not as dry as the others. I think it should be ok to root today too.

I already checked out the forum a little, but since my transplant doesn't have roots, how long should I wait to water the actual aloe? And for the middle piece I'm trying to root-should I wait until I see something green sprouting before I water? And the original roots... can you water before the others since it already has roots?

I will try and find these answers on my own as well. You have all been so helpful with all your experience! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 10:08AM
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I would definitely wait until you see some sign that the plant is rooted to water. If the plant has no roots, it can't take up any water anyway, so watering would only contribute to rot. The plant or stem piece would get firmly anchored in the soil is one sign that roots are there, or you would see evidence of growth from roots, stem piece, or plant.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 2:24PM
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Ok so it's all done! Fingers crossed that I have rooting/growing success!! I was talking to my mom this morning and these plants are actually going to be 36 years old this August! There were some rocks in the bottom of the original pot so those have been in there 36 years too! I divided the rocks amongst the new transplants and put a splash of original dirt in the bottom for sentimental reasons. :) Now we play the waiting game.... here are a few pictures.

Here are the middle stems.

Bottom root.

Transplanted 36 year old aloe vera plant #1

Transplanted 36 year old aloe vera plant #2 - This one is pretty top heavy because it was growing upside down for so many years. Do you think it will keep growing down? Is there something I can do to make it more upright? If I used something to prop it up a bit would it damage the aloe leaves?

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 3:02PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

I'm sorry but someone should have told you to use the smallest pots possible, those are way too big & will matter if you water (big risk of rot), so again, DO NOT WATER 'til you see new growth.

Perhaps this time it'll be OK, next use much smaller pots, just an inch or two larger around than the thing you're planting (at maximum).

Next time, pls. don't use rocks on the bottom, they interfere w/ drainage. Nix on the old soil too (sorry, not helpful even if for sentimental reasons).

You could prop the plants up w/ a stick or a stake. Tell me pls. are those plants firm to the touch or soft, the ones that are flopping over? If firm, there's hope they'll recover. If not, ???

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 5:03PM
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Really? I can try put them in a smaller pot, but the plant is really big (approx. 19 inches). I'm not sure the plant will stay up with any smaller of a pot? I could try lay them on their side and wrap a tiny pot just around the stem. Maybe that would work? I just don't want them to die. :*( I have not watered them at all.

Are the stem pots ok?

I used a splash of old soil, as in between fingers. I hope that's ok. I can take the rocks out - there are pretty big drain holes in the bottom. I just thought the plant did so well with rocks in it that I had to do the same. I thought it helped with drainage. Geez I really don't know much about this! Well, at least they haven't started to root, so I can still fix it. Anything else I need to know?

The leaves are firm to touch. They look floppy because they were growing upside down. So when you turn the plant right side up the leaf was going back and forth. I think it might have to stay that way because if you try to move them it moves the stem.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 6:17PM
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The #1 plant is firm. But, #2 does have some soft leaves now that I feel the difference between the two. I sure hope it comes back!

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 6:25PM
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Okay, I'm going to try and see if I can explain this. Plants need to have air as much as they need nutrients and water. They need air not just around their leaves, but also around their roots. So you want a soil that has air spaces between the particles. That is why we encouraged you to put that perlite in there-to make these air spaces happen. Here is what happens if you have a water retentive soil mix in a container. The soil holds water, and the air spaces get filled in with water and they disappear. No air for roots, and this encourages rot. Also, if the spaces are small, then a particular situation happens in a container called a perched water table. What happens is the water, rather than draining out of the pot from the bottom completely, its unable to beat the capillary action and remains in the bottom third of the potting soil. This basically makes the bottom third of the pot unable to support roots due to the ensuing rot since it never dries out and there are no air spaces. If you add rocks to bottom of the pot, rather than solving the problem it just moves the perched water table up in the pot and makes even less of the pot available to the plant for good rot-free root growth. So this is why putting rocks in has lately been discredited. If it isn't hard to do, I would remove them. You could put them on top of the soil if you want later for decorations or for sentiment. Even the old soil wouldn't probably have hurt too much sprinkled just a touch on the top of the soil for luck or whatever. Roots don't spend a lot of time on the very top of the soil. But the old soil really is pretty spent after so long!

I am happy to see the perlite in there, and I am happy to see you are resourceful in putting the plastic pots in the heavier ceramic ones to help hold things up. I have used toothpicks to hold plants up while they are rooting, or old chopsticks. Older aloes are pretty big, and # 2 is in a difficult position. I think that you are pretty much stuck with the position the aloe is in until it gets some roots, although I have had jade cuttings do some real contortionist bending towards the light even without roots. When things are growing, they will grow towards the light, and they will stand up better then.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 11:09PM
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I know we seem to be going all over the place with things, but bear with us. If we could just be there with you I think we would be able to see what is going on and evaluate things and act accordingly way more easily. I am wondering if you are located in a big city that might have a group of cactus and succulent enthusiasts who might help you. Sometimes this can be another help. It's just way more easy to talk than to type. But I'll carry on.

About the firmness of the #2 plant-Is it mostly the bottom leaves that are soft, and the top ones are firm? If so, then I don't think it is a lost cause, but I wonder if you could try removing more of the bottom of the plant, and then it could be put in the pot in a more erect fashion. Now, I've never done this with an aloe, removed green leaves, that is, so I don't know if it is possible or not. I think if you did this it would definitely need a lot callusing over before you pot it up. But I also could be wrong about this working.

I think that aloes need a lot of root room. I am no expert, but this is the number one point in the aloe FAQ from the cactus and succulent forum. But you do have to be thoughtful about watering. I have another reason for thinking this, and for thinking that aloes need to have terra cotta or ceramic pots. They get top heavy, since you have to let them dry out in between waterings. In my northern clime where mine has to be inside a lot, it just doesn't get the sun and tends to lean a lot, and it in its low-light frustration has tried two times in its existence commit suicide by leaping off the table onto the floor. So I have had to search through he debris and find an undamaged pup and start again. But I have probably had my aloe, or a clone of it as long as your grandma, and I think that having a larger root ball wouldn't be a bad thing, to help keep things in place. Also I have been adding coarse chicken grit to my mix just to add weight. It does mean that I have to be like Charles Atlas to carry pots in and out, but so be it.

I'm including a photo of my aloe the one time that it did bloom for me, in 2005 about one month before it decided to take the leap. I'm including it because I want you to get an idea what we have in mind when we think of aloe vera, which might be different than what you have in mind. See, I think your grandma had her aloe in a lower light situation, and this makes it look different than one grown in the conditions that lead to its fullest expression of aloe-ness. Mine isn't probably the best example, you could find a lot better photo on the web of one that has been outside all the time in a field on a aloe vera gel farm, but when they are outside in full sun they are more gray-green, and the white dots kind of disappear. They are large plants, on mine the rosette is about three feet in diameter. They might even get a sort of reddish tinge. I just worry that if we tell you how to best grow your aloe, you will be unhappy in that it no longer looks like your grandma's, is really big and taking over your house, and whatever happened to the time when plants did what you expect then to? So I am kind of trying to give you a warning
so we aren't working at cross purposes here.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 10:20AM
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Aseed..I have various Aloes...Stalk grows similar to yours, but flowers are all orange.

Will yours turn orange, too?

BTW, your stalk is nice-looking, very hearty, strong.

Donna, finding the proper size pot for rooting a top-heavy plant is difficult.

Do you have a strong stake/piece of wood to keep your Aloe from leaning?

If you do, insert stick beside the Aloe, attach w/Ti's.

Are your Aloes getting proper light?
Notice how both lean a little? When you set Aloes in light, place leaning side away from light so the opposite side will get balanced sun. Know what I mean? lol. Toni

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 12:21PM
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Thank you for the explanation. I live in a small town, so there isn't any groups to join IRL.

Wow! That is/was a gorgeous aloe! Too bad it commit suicide, but I'm glad you were able to save a pup :) Thanks for sharing.

So, I re-potted the two roots, and aloe #1 in smaller pots and without the rocks on the bottom. I hope the pots are small enough.

Bottom roots

Aloe #1

As for Aloe #2... The four bottom leaves are flat and hard, like there isn't any aloe in them, and two of the leaves are a dark purple on the bottom. The top 3 leaves (new growth) look really good, but the ones in between (about 5) are really soft at the base from flipping back and forth (almost a transparent look on the skin) Now, I'm not so much worried that the plant won't "look" like my Grandma's I just want it to survive. So, do you think I should take off the bottom 4 and let it callus over before I re-pot?

Aloe # 2 under leaves

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 1:22PM
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Hi Toni.

Our house is north facing. I currently have them upstairs in a south facing room. They are on a dresser that is against the west wall. I hope this is ok for them to be because I don't really have anywhere else to put them at the moment. Thanks for the tip about leaning. I will do that.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 2:54PM
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@ Toni

I think that Aloe barbadensis comes in both a yellow flower form, and an orange flower form, so we just have different forms. This bloom in the photo was in 2005, and there was no color change.

Okay donna. I'm really not sure what to tell you here about taking the soft leaves off on #2, and shortening the stem and then repotting. I was hoping that some of the other posters would chime in about whether this is a good idea. I think the purple stuff is just bruising from all the handling and bending this plant has had to go through, but I am not sure.

I hope you can figure out how to get these plants room at your sunniest window. I would be tempted to get them into a high light but not direct sun place while they were rooting, and then into full sun when they are rooted. Toni is giving you good advice about turning them. I never did, and so mine leaned long ago, and that is why it ended up on the floor.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 4:17PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi Donna,

Sorry I couldn't get back to you earlier & that this has become so seemingly complicated, it's not meant to be. We can't all get back to you in 24 hrs., so perhaps wait a bit before doing MORE things (tho' at this point I think enough has been done).

I hadn't had a chance to get back to explain I didn't understand what I was looking at for the 3 pots pic. I hadn't known one was the old roots & was reacting to the pots being too big for the bits of stem (thought they were in 3 pots not 2 + 1 of the roots).

The smaller pots look good now (can't tell the pots size w/out anything to tell size, a scale reference like a soda can, a pencil, your fingers or hand, etc.) Am ASSUMING those square pots are smaller than the earlier square pots but can't see that at all. I thought those were the 2 stem bits potted, but in re-reading your text it seems like those are the 2 roots pots, I'm confused, but the smaller look better.

Pls. forget about the leaning for now, that's the least of the issues, it's survival that Aseedis & I are concerned about.

Pls. do not unpot the plant again! Enough work has been done & what the plants are going to need now is TIME & PATIENCE.

I asked about firm vs. soft leaves as I said before, the firm ones suggest the plant can survive, the soft ones, well, let's say that's more of a crap shoot.

The bottom leaves which you say are flat & hard, confuses me.

If thin btwn your fingers (like you said they feel like they have no Aloe in therm), those should be cut off (where they joint the stem) they won't recover.

That's all I got & gotta run, now just sit back & observe pls. & good job so far.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 4:44PM
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pirate_girl - Sorry I didn't wait for your response - I know you are busy, and I appreciate ALL your information. I thought I should take out the rocks and downsize the pot before too much time went by. Once it gets roots, the last thing I need is perched water table to rot the roots!

The two square ones(same size pot)are the roots, and the 3 little ones are the stems.

I re-potted Aloe #1, Do you think I should leave #2 the way it is then? It is in a bigger pot(it doesn't touch the bottom of the pot it's sitting in, so it really isn't that tall!)and has rocks in the bottom. Well, the bottom leaves have aloe, but are more flat than the others, like they won't last long. I'm just going to leave them until this plant gets roots. It has been through so much already!!

Let me know if you think I should re-pot to the same size as the other and take out the rocks.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2012 at 5:26PM
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I think that things look good, and so now is the waiting time. I bet those bottom leaves that are soft will get softer, as when the plant starts to root it will have to rely on its stored water and resources, so it will take from the bottom ones first. But they may not recover. When the plant is able to plump up, then you will know that roots are coming.
Good luck, and let us know how this turns out.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 8:35AM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Thanks ASeed for coming back on here, ditto to your comments to Donna.

A picture really IS worth a 1000 words. That 1st pic shows all I was unclear about & explains the whole story. You did fine, some things will root, I'm sure.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 9:31AM
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Well, I still haven't watered anything... should I water the 2 original roots yet?

#2 Aloe isn't looking so good :( #1 still seems firm but I'm a little worried. There is nothing going on with the stems that I can tell. The plants are getting a lot of light, but are not in direct sunlight.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2012 at 10:34PM
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I doubt those stems alone are viable, but I hope you surprise me. I would mist them only, the same with the unrooted plants.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2012 at 12:33AM
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Just drifting through looking for some aloe information. We've got an old aloe plant that was leaning, sprawling, and taking up basically the all the room behind the kitchen sink so my wife cut the plant off, leaving a couple of pups. We're trying to figure out what to do with the rest of the plant (got the plant tip stuck back in the pot for now) and the rest of the plant in waiting. Anyhow, was searching and stumbled upon this thread. No questions from me as ya'll have already answered them with your responses to donna_16 but I do have a question for her...

How has your aloe plant responded to your attention? Got an update for us?


    Bookmark   June 20, 2012 at 9:08AM
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Hi Ed!

Both Aloe plants themselves rooted and are alive today!:) Nothing happened with the roots or the middle stems.

I did what everyone said... let them callus over and plant in the smallest pot possible in a cactus/perlite mix. DON'T water until they have rooted. I just lightly misted them about a week after the transplant. I give them a bit more water now that they have rooted. GOOD LUCK with your transplant, keep me posted.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2012 at 12:38AM
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OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am so upset! My son pulled one of aloe plants (the nicer one) over and it fell right on all the new growth, which are now all snapped off. I've been crying for 45 minutes...

I replanted it with new dirt & no water, but what are the chances of it surviving? It has pretty decent roots growing. Should I be doing anything more for it? When should I try watering it again?

Ugh, not a good start to the new year!

    Bookmark   January 1, 2013 at 2:12PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi Donna,

Sorry for the mishap, I'm sorry you're so upset, but pls. stop crying, spilled milk as it were; you can't undo the damage, can just hope for the best.

Just pls. remove all the broken growth, since you've put it back in the pot that's really all one can do, & hope for the best. Leave it alone to recover, wait at least a week to water (when was it last watered?)

Pls. try not to feel so badly (bet your son feels awful too) The plant will likely recover, tho' not regrow the broken leaves, just pls. give it time & remember, these are rough, sturdy plants which can endure a lot!!

    Bookmark   January 1, 2013 at 3:21PM
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Thank you! That makes me feel better. My son is only 2 so he doesn't even know what he did.

I don't water them very much so the roots were dry. I really hope it comes back!

    Bookmark   January 1, 2013 at 6:17PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

PS: maybe move the plant to a spot out of reach of your son, so as not to have this happen again?

    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 6:06PM
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Exactly! He never touches it, so ironic that it happened new years day. I'm going to have to give it to my sister for awhile to make sure it doesn't happen again. Our house is north facing, so I have limited places where it will get enough sun.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2013 at 10:53AM
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So unfortunately the aloe plant that took the fall died. But, good news is that the other plant produced two pups!! I'm so happy & excited about that.

Now, I don't want to screw up transplanting those. So do I take the same steps as I transplanted the main plants? And how do I detach them safely? Thank you all so much for your help!

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 12:05PM
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I'm new to this site, but I was reading about your Aloe Vera plant and was wondering how it all turned out?
I'm also new to transplanting Aloe's... I inherited my father-in-laws Aloe, which was totally over grown, and I broke it down into several plants/pots. I'm starting to get pups and I'm wondering what to do next.
After reading all these posts, I realize I could use a little help, too.
Thanks for any input.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2013 at 7:08PM
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Wow...a lot of information I didn't know about Aloe Vera. The reason I stumbled across this forum is that I have a very big Aloe Vera (Big Bertha) she is healthy. She seems to be growing up the way at a very fast rate, with new growth always showing in the middle and she produces a lot of pups. The height is causing her to be top heavy and I was wondering if I should cut some of the bottom leaves off and pot her further down into the cactus soil.

Another problem I have is that I have one window which faces South and where I put all my Aloe Veras during the Winter. Unfortunately during the Spring it is too cold to put them outside and the Sun can be very strong and sunburn the plants. I have no where else to put them or would covering them with the fleece you would use in a garden help?

    Bookmark   May 20, 2014 at 2:42PM
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If an Aloe is growing correctly, the top leaves, which may appear to be too heavy, are balanced by the bottom ones, in most cases (you can throw hybrids like 'Goliath' and 'Medusa' out of this rough estimation). So removing the bottom ones are actually helping the Aloe become unstably top-heavy. A picture of the plant would help.

Yes, fleece can be used to cover those

    Bookmark   May 22, 2014 at 1:05AM
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