Basic Aloe Vera Care
The Aloe Vera is often the first plant endeavour for many plant parents as their easy care routine and luscious green leaves make them the perfect beginner plant.
There are a few important things to note when it comes to keeping your Aloe Vera thriving. Firstly, they need a well-draining potting mix as their roots are very sensitive to root rot. A succulent or cacti mix should work well as it should include perlite which helps not only with drainage but also with aeration of the soil.
The second thing to remember when it comes to Aloe Vera care is that they need bright but indirect light. If grown in low light areas they can become straggly but will scorch in intense direct sunlight during summer. It might be a case of moving your Aloe Vera around depending on the season to get the light level right.
Below is our full Aloe Vera Care Guide with all the information you need to best look after your Aloe.
Detailed Aloe Vera Care
Aloe Vera love bright, indirect sunlight
Make sure your home has enough natural light to keep these ones happy. Whilst they can sustain some direct light, after a while too much sunlight will dry our your Aloe Vera’s leaves. It is all about finding the right spot your for Aloe and it’ll thrive!
Be careful not to overwater your Aloe Vera
Aloe Veras are quite sensitive plants when it comes to watering. The less the better really. They really dislike sitting in water so make sure they dry out fully between waterings. If you think you may have overwatered your Alow Vera, replace the soil immediately and adjust your watering schedule.
Use a well-draining potting mix
A good potting mix for your Aloe Vera should contain perlite, lava rock or coarse sand to help water drainage. This will protect the roots from rotting which is the most common issue with Aloe Veras as it can happen quite quickly if you accidentally overwater them a few times.
Aloe Vera can be toxic if ingested
Although the gel can be used on skin to reduce pain, you should never ingest any part of an Aloe Vera as it can cause nausea and can even be toxic in large quantities.
It’s easy to propagate your Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera grow little pups from the main root system that pop up next to the mother plant. Simply cut the pup off with a couple of cm stem and repot them in succulent soil.
They don’t need to be fertilised
Fertilising your Aloe Vera won’t harm it but it isn’t really necessary. They should be fertilised no more than once a year and we recommend using a water-soluble fertiliser if you do choose that you want to.
Warmer temperatures are best for your Aloe Vera
Although they aren’t as fussy as some other houseplants, warmer temperatures do encourage more growth in your Aloe Vera. Make sure they aren’t placed near an air vent or drafty window as the cooler temperatures will affect your Aloe Vera’s health.
You don’t need to increase the humidity
One great thing about Aloe Vera plants is that they do well in the natural humidity of your home. In fact they don’t mind if the air is a little dry which means you don’t need to worry about misting or trying to increase humidity levels.
Aloe Vera Care FAQs
Can Aloe Vera tolerate full sun?
Whilst they can sustain some direct light, if exposed to too much it will dry out and scorch the leaves of your Aloe Vera. Bright but indirect light is best.
Is Aloe Vera toxic to pets?
Yes, the Aloe Vera is toxic to pets when ingested so keep your furry friends away from it if you worry they might be tempted to chew at the leaves.
Is Aloe Vera easy to care for?
Aloe Vera plants are pretty low maintenance as they don’t require much water and can thrive in light levels that most other plants can’t. You also don’t need to worry about boosting the humidity so we strongly recommend these to beginner plant parents.
How often should I water my Aloe Vera?
Aloe Vera plants are very sensitive to overwatering and consequent root rot so you want to water them sparingly. Cut back watering during winter so that you are only watering once a month.
Can Aloe Vera survive in low light?
Unfortunately, Aloe Vera plants don’t do very well in low light areas. It will cause stunted growth, discolouration of the leaves and even cause your plant to wilt and die.
Common Issues for Aloe Vera
Although Aloe Vera plants are seemingly very low maintenance, they can sometimes be a little fussy about their environment and care so it’s important to look out for the warning signs.
Why has my Aloe Vera developed yellow leaves?
Yellowing on your Aloe Vera is often caused by too much direct sunlight. Try to move your Aloe Vera to a spot with indirect sunshine during summer and this should help to avoid any more yellow leaves from developing on your Aloe Vera.
Why has my Aloe Vera developed brown leaves?
Brown Aloe Vera leaves are usually a symptom of incorrect watering, both underwatering and overwatering. Both issues will damage the root system and result in your plant being unable t maintain the level of healthy growth, meaning it will develop brown leaves.
Have a feel of the soil to determine whether the brown leaves are caused by too much or too little moisture and adjust your watering habits accordingly. You can find out more about why your Aloe Vera is turning brown in our helpful guide.
What shall I do if my Aloe Vera's soil is waterlogged?
It can be an easy mistake to overwater your aloe vera. In this instance it is best to replace the potting mix entirely as the water will be causing damage to your aloe’s root system. You can find out more about root rot fixes and prevention in our complete root rot guide.
Why has My Aloe Vera turned soft and mushy?
Soft or mushy leaves on your Aloe Vera is usually consequence of overwatering. Try replacing the soil with new dry potting mix and hope that it is not too late!
Why is my Aloe Vera becoming straggily and leggy?
Leggy and straggly growth on an Aloe Vera is most often caused by insufficient light levels. Try moving your Aloe Vera closer to the window and the new growth should start to look healthier.
Help, I think my Aloe Vera is dying!
Most commonly Aloe Vera plants die because of light or watering issues. Check the moisture in the soil to determine if you have been overwatering it. We have written a detailed guide to help you figure out why your Aloe Vera might be dying.
Why is my Aloe Vera losing leaves?
There are two common causes of Aloe Vera plants losing their leaves, firstly overwatering and secondly a lack of sunlight. If the leaves that are falling off your Aloe Vera feel soft, and the potting mix is waterlogged, then too much water is causing your Aloe Vera to lose leaves.
However, if the plant looks quite leggy as well as losing leaves, then it can mean that your Aloe Vera isn’t getting enough light. Move your Aloe Vera to a slightly sunnier spot and monitor any changes.
Why is my Aloe Vera drooping?
There are quite a few causes of droopy Aloe Vera leaves so it can be a bit trickier to properly diagnose. Watering issues such as too much or too little moisture can cause your Aloe Vera to droop, alongside temperature issues, lack of sunlight and more worryingly pests.
In order to find out what is causing your Aloe Vera to droop, inspect the potting mix, take a close look at the leaves and monitor the sunlight and temperature levels around your Aloe Vera.
Why does my Aloe Vera have curling leaves?
The most common reason why Aloe Vera plants start to curl their leaves is in response to a lack of moisture. If your Aloe Vera isn’t given enough water it will start to use the conserves it keeps in its leaves, which then causes them to curl.
Check the moisture levels in the potting mix before slowly giving your Aloe Vera some more water. This should help revive your plant and stop any more of your Aloe Vera’s leaves curling.
Written by Billy Dawson