Plant ID forum: Aloe plant identification and support help

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Wisconsin
learningcurve
Jun 1, 2018 5:45 PM CST
Hello!
I have an aloe plant that is 3-4 years old. It is beautiful and produces beautiful coral flowers. I was wondering if someone knows what type of aloe plant I have. It grows up rather than out and I would love to know more so I can properly take care of it. The plant continues to be top heavy. Any suggestions as to how I support it? I don't want to cut it or use support sticks that take away from the appearance. I've attached some pictures to help.
Thank you.
Thumb of 2018-06-01/learningcurve/a72e93


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Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
Cactus and Succulents Seed Starter Foliage Fan Xeriscape Container Gardener Hummingbirder
Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Photography Region: Mexico Plant Identifier Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator
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Baja_Costero
Jun 2, 2018 8:28 AM CST
It looks like your plant needs more light in order to have the sort of compact outward growth you prefer.
Wisconsin
learningcurve
Jun 2, 2018 9:18 AM CST
Interesting. I am giving it as much sun as I can and the ends look burnt in some spots. It never crossed my mind that I was hampering the growth like that. If it helps none of the "babies" its produced over the years that I've gifted to people are growing out either. They are all the same. You have definitely given me something to think about. Thank you!
Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
Cactus and Succulents Seed Starter Foliage Fan Xeriscape Container Gardener Hummingbirder
Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Photography Region: Mexico Plant Identifier Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator
Image
Baja_Costero
Jun 2, 2018 9:39 AM CST
It is basically impossible to sunburn an aloe indoors unless you're going from a position in total shade very abruptly into hours and hours of sun. That kind of sharp change might cause a problem, otherwise (especially over chronic exposure) indoor sun is not a hazard.

Indoor sun is not direct because regular window glass filters out much of the harmful UV rays. If you were to take a plant from indoors that is getting hours of daily sun (what I would recommend for your aloe by the way) and move it to an outdoor position with the same number of hours of sun -- what would seem to be equivalent to the human eye -- the result most definitely could be sunburn, because of the UV. That's one reason why you need to be careful moving an indoor plant out into the sun, especially this time of year. I realize yours is an indoor plant, this just to provide some perspective about light levels.

As a result of indoor sun being relatively kind to your aloe, you cannot provide too much. (Assuming good air flow and moderate temperatures so heat is not a problem.) So see if there is a sunnier position you might be able to provide, like right behind an unobstructed south facing window. In all fairness the position it's currently occupying right inside that window looks pretty good to me.

Light issues indoors are often seasonal in nature. During the late fall and early winter, the days are shorter but the sun is also lower in the sky (more likely to be blocked by objects on the horizon), and travels less distance over the course of the day (thus will penetrate less far into different parts of your house). That time of year is when your plant is most likely to be experiencing insufficient light. Maybe this is the wrong time of year to work on improving exposure, if that makes any sense.

In any case your situation in Wisconsin is going to be challenging for most succulents during the winter, so it would make sense that the gifted plants would be growing similar to the mother plant. Here in sunny Baja California I am able to ensure my indoor aloes get hours of daily sun through the window year round, and they seem to appreciate the exposure. You will of course have to take advantage of the best conditions you can provide where you are, unless you are interested in trying grow lights (which seems like a lot of effort to me).

I could be wrong about the posture, not having a specific name for your plant, this is just my feedback based on growing a few dozen other plants in the genus.
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - Jun 2, 2018 9:47 AM (+)]
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