Aloe vera is a low-maintenance plant throughout the entire year. Despite the fact that it grows faster outdoors during the warmer months, it can easily adapt indoors as a decorative plant. Here are the golden rules to follow when caring for your aloe vera:
Watering your Aloe Vera
When it comes to watering, it is important to remember that your plant is in greater danger of drowning than being under-watered. Being a succulent plant, Aloe vera holds plenty of water so even if the soil seems a little dry, you are probably Ok since it holds water in reserve. This means that although it may seem as if your plant is lacking water, the fact is that the plant is well. The best way to check if your NorAloe plant requires water is to put your finger 2-3 inches into the soil, if your plant is small (NorAloe 4inch), you have to check about 1-2 inches and if the soil is moist (soil that sticks to the finger) it doesn’t require any water. Use soil that drains well. Make sure there is a drainage hole in the pot since the roots could rot when exposed to moist soil for longer periods of time.
Watering during spring and summer: It must be regular but moderate. About once every 7-10 days, depending on the temperature. During summer, you can really soak the soil but let the soil dry out between waterings.
Watering in the fall and winter: Your aloe will not dry as quickly in the fall and winter, so you will need to reduce the watering frequency during this period.
Aloe vera requires good lighting(ideally sunlight). Too much sun may dry its leaves and make them yellowish/brownwish*. Opt to position your NorAloe near a window that lets the maximum amount of light in. The temperature inside a house is ideal as the recommended temperature it should be subjected to is between 18° et 24° throughout the year. From may to september, you can leave the plant outdoors without any problem but do not hesitate to bring it indoors if the nights are cool.
*Important: When spring settles in, you’ll probably want to take advantage of the nice weather and let your Aloe enjoy the sunshine. Note that direct exposure to sunlight for a long time, will dry up your leaves and make them turn yellow/brown. In that case, the plant is not dead but simply sustained a sunlight shock. Reduce the frequency of exposure to sunlight the first few weeks and gradually increase.
When you buy a NorAloe plant, regardless of its size (4, 6, 12 inches), it comes in a plastic pot. Initially, the NorAloe pots are sufficient but it is recommended that you repot into a larger pot for more space. As a general rule, choose a pot three times longer than the length of the roots. Get a clay pot with drainage holes and position a tray underneath to catch the soil and water. After several months, if the leaves of your aloe vera are as long as the pot, it is time to repot into a larger container. Ideally repotting should be done during the spring.
HOW TO READ YOUR PLANT
Poor care of your Aloe shows itself sometimes by looking at the leaves. Here’s how you can know what is happening with your plant and the steps needed to rectify the situation:
The leaves of your aloe plant should grow as upward as possible, away from the base. If the leaves are lying flat, your Aloe is probably getting insufficient light. Although the leaves may turn brown with excessive light, they still need a good amount of sunlight. If the leaves are thin and curved, you have probably not watered your aloe sufficiently. In this case, it uses its own reserves of water in order to water itself. Give it some water!
If the plant grows very slowly, this could signal that the soil or water may be too alkaline. It may also mean that the plant was wet for too long; it needs more light/sunshine, or has too much fertilizer. It could also benefit from a larger pot
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