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Aloe arborescens (photo courtesy of Kimberley Navabpour)
Aloe arborescens (photo courtesy of Kimberley Navabpour)

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Zones 8, 9, 13-27, H1, H2
Full SunPartial Sun
Full, Partial
Regular WaterMinimal Water
Moderate, Minimal

Aloe arborescens

Torch Aloe, Candelabra Plant
Cacti and succulents, Shrubs


Primarily South African natives, the aloes range from 6-in. miniatures to trees; all form clumps of fleshy, pointed leaves and bear branched or unbranched clusters of orange, yellow, cream, or red flowers. Different species bloom every month; biggest show comes from midwinter through summer. Leaves may be green or gray green, often strikingly banded or streaked with contrasting colors.

Showy and easy to grow in well-drained soil in reasonably frost-free areas; need little water but can take more. Except as noted, give full sun in cooler climates, light shade in hotter regions. Where winters are too cold for all-year outdoor culture, grow in pots and shelter from frosts. Most kinds make outstanding container plants. Highly valued as ornamentals, in the ground or in pots.

Aloe arborescens

Forms a large, rounded shrub, to 10 ft. high and wide. Branching stems carry big clumps of gray-green, spiny-edged leaves. Vermillion (occasionally yellow) winter flowers are held above foliage in spiky clusters. Withstands salt spray. Tolerates shade. Foliage damaged at 27°F/–3°C, but plants have survived 17°F/–8°C. There is also a variegated form.

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