jueves, 19 de junio de 2014

Aloe Vera

Name: Aloe Vera, Aloe

Latin name: Aloe vera, Aloe barbadensis

Foliage: Perennial.

Mature height: It can reach 1.64 ft high

Description: Originally comes from Eastern and Southern Africa. More than 250 varieties of aloe are known, some very similar to Aloe Vera; but, only the Aloe Vera and four or five varieties more have therapeutic properties.

The species of the aloe´s genus are mostly woody plants, with long, big and thick leaves, almost triangular. They are rosette-shaped and with smooth edges or with pointed teeth.

Green or blue color, the leaves can also be variegated.

His blooming is decorative. The flowers are tubular-shaped and they can have reddish, orangey or yellowish color.

They are mostly used as rock garden plant or for an outdoor and indoor pot.

Soil and Location: The Aloe Vera does not support the humidity in excess, neither the intense cold (Never below 32 °F). It is a extremely resistant plant: as it is to droughts, it is to plagues or predators, or to the aridity of the land. But the Aloe Vera does not reject a periodic irrigation or a land rich in nutrients.

It likes direct light, although in the central hours of hot days, a little bit of shadow is always welcomed.

If the Aloe Vera gets so much sun, the leaves may turn brown.
Thin and creased leaves might be because of water absence.

Irrigation: The Aloe Vera does not much water. We have to pay attention to the water not to block up, The Aloe can stay long seasons without water, especially in winter

Pruning: The Aloe is not pruned like the other plants. It is usually pruned to get its gel, but it can be pruned too for these reasons:

- Prune one leaf to get his gel: prune one leaf near the base of the plant because it should be one of the oldest and it will have more gel.
- Remove the dry, damaged leaves, or the ones that are in bad condition.
- To control the plant size removing the shoots.
- Prune a little bit the roots when you replant the shoots, in order to produce a stronger a new system of roots.

Reproduction: The reproduction of the Aloe is easy, only removing and planting the shoots that sprout around the mother plant, preferably in spring.
The propagation by seeds is easy (in spring).

Interesting notes: From remote times The Aloe Vera is been considered like a “miraculous plant” to relieve health problems.

Chinese were the first in using the Aloe and in the Ancient Egypt was commonly used and they refer of the Aloe as the immortality plant. The used to include the plant between the funerary devices buried with the pharaohs.

In the 1st century of the Common Era, Dioscorides gives in his herbarium an accurate description of the Aloe. There are historic documents of the Romans, Greeks, Hindus, Arabs and other towns from hot climates, where its medicinal and cosmetic virtues are explained.

Nowadays, its characteristics has been clinically proven and the scientists are getting more and more interested in its medical applications.

It has good effects for the health in a long variety of applications.

- Against the heartburn and it helps the digestion.
- As an anti-age, it has hydrant effects.
- Against arthritis and rheumatisms, it has sedative and anti-inflammatory effects.
- Against the asthma.
- Against the hair loss.
- As a coagulant in the healing of the wounds.
- As a cholesterol reducing.
- Against the burns.

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