Photo of Gariep Aloe (Aloe gariepensis)→Whats with the color?

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Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
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skopjecollection
Jan 17, 2019 7:38 AM CST
Why does it look weird?
Name: Lin Vosbury
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plantladylin
Jan 17, 2019 7:42 AM CST
@skopjecollection - this is the comment at the bottom of the database page for the plant.

Posted by Baja_Costero (Baja California - Zone 11b) on May 28, 2017 7:37 PM

"Solitary, stemless aloe with erect, often incurved leaves that have white spots and turn various colors of orange/red/brown with exposure and drought.

Found on both sides of the Orange River, which runs between Namibia and South Africa in a winter rainfall climate with frequent fog. The species name derives from the Khoi word for this river, which means "great river". It is a representative endemic of the Gariep Center of the Succulent Karoo, a region shared with several other aloes: A. erinacea, pearsonii, pillansii, ramosissima, krapohliana var. dumoulinii, striata ssp. karasbergensis, among others. The Gariep Center is also home to the greatest diversity of ice plants (Aizoaceae).

Drought tolerant and ideally suited to dry Mediterranean climate gardens. May be a robust regional form of the widespread A. microstigma, which has shorter floral bracts. Some plants may form small clumps."
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Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
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skopjecollection
Jan 17, 2019 8:21 AM CST
Maybe i should have been more specific...
Why does it have rust colored patches on the leaves?
Name: Thijs van Soest
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mcvansoest
Jan 17, 2019 8:40 AM CST
Explained in the first sentence of the comment quoted by Baja - a stress response.
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Name: Christie
Central Ohio 43016 (Zone 6a)
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cwhitt
Jan 17, 2019 8:41 AM CST
Don't know that much about Aloe, but it says "Solitary, stemless aloe with erect, often incurved leaves that have white spots and turn various colors of orange/red/brown with exposure and drought." Is your plant in harsh or drought conditions?

Also, here is something from https://homeguides.sfgate.com/...

Aloe Rust
Aloe rust is a fungal disease that causes black or brown circular spots on aloe leaves. The blackened area oxidizes and seals itself from the rest of the plant, and the discoloration does not spread. Prevention is the best control for this disease. Although rarely seen in North America, aloe rust can spread in commercially cultivated plants, so avoid buying aloe plants that show symptoms. Provide adequate sun and keep water off the leaves. Avoid crowding and over-watering aloe plants.
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Name: Stefan
SE europe(balkans) (Zone 6b)
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skopjecollection
Jan 17, 2019 9:31 AM CST
mcvansoest said:Explained in the first sentence of the comment quoted by Baja - a stress response.

Ive seen the other post. When stressed, it was just red/brown. Didnt have anything looking like this.
I dont see any dark spots here:
[Last edited by skopjecollection - Jan 17, 2019 9:31 AM (+)]
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Name: Thijs van Soest
Tempe, AZ (Zone 9b)
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mcvansoest
Jan 17, 2019 9:43 AM CST
Well, I guess it could be Aloe rust as Christie suggests, but I have seen Aloes with a similar looking appearance that went back to looking pretty much normal once the seasons changed. I am sure @Baja_Costero can give the details but to me the photo in the picture looks like a plant that saw a lot of sun in hot weather, whereas the other looks more like how my Aloes look in winter. So maybe different seasons?

It is what it is!
Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
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Baja_Costero
Jan 17, 2019 11:48 AM CST
I welcome all the speculation about color because the reason I took the picture in the first place was to document the color. Smiling

This plant undergoes 2 different types of color change in reaction to stress, primarily drought stress in this case. One is a general orange or brownish hue like in the second picture above, also documented in the database entry with a plant in habitat. That color will rapidly reverse to green within about 2 weeks after proper rainfall. The difference is quite striking. We are now in our rainy season, so the reversal has taken place already.

The second type of color change in response to stress is a more permanent type of sunburn, ie. the dark brown spots that are documented in the photo, that does not reverse with rehydration. You can see in the photo that the newer, younger leaves lack this color and are plain green. These leaves are new since the peak of summer. This plant shows a pretty striking seasonal growth pattern in our climate and the leaves start out pristine before their first summer. I do not view the dark brown spots as a sign of anything wrong, just evidence that the plant has been through hard times.

Some other observations...

The orangey aloe in the second picture is a different plant, not the one in the original picture. I have yet to upload a proper picture of the bigger plant during the peak of summer drought. Those 2 plants are growing together on a rocky hillside here in a climate that very much resembles their habitat (arid climate, dry summers, winter rainfall, lots of fog). I meant for them to flower together and then grow the species from seed, but that has yet to happen, because they skip a flowering season when it doesn't rain enough.

Bear in mind that we experience an annual summer drought that is several months long, and our previous rainy season (last winter) was the driest in recorded history (maybe 3 inches of total rainfall). So this big plant (current picture at top) is coming out of a really difficult place water-wise.

Aloe rust is something that basically does not happen here, at least not as it is described above. I think lots of air flow and sunlight probably work wonders to keep it at bay. Maybe it's a greenhouse thing.
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - Jan 17, 2019 12:24 PM (+)]
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Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
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Baja_Costero
Jan 17, 2019 3:06 PM CST
Compare these 2 pictures of an unrelated aloe (during drought stress and soon after rainfall) and you will see a similar phenomenon going on. The overall cast of stress color is rapidly reversible but there are spots that do not reverse.

Some of those red spots will probably never go away, and it's no big deal. After all, the whole plant will be red again in another 9 months.

Thumb of 2019-01-17/Baja_Costero/abf9fe
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - Jan 17, 2019 3:07 PM (+)]
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