Summer is almost over and as always our garden always takes a hit during the hot months here in Phoenix. No matter what my husband and I do, we always loose something over the summers in our garden. With record heats it is bound to happen. Even with covered areas with shade the temps are just over the top on some days and it makes our part of the world an oven. This year it was our little orange tree we lost, so I will be replacing that eventually. But there is one plant that is always there year after year, sticking with us like an old faithful friend and that plant is Aloe Vera…mom’s medicine.
It is also one of the easiest plants to grow. Here in Arizona, it is everywhere.
It was first introduced to me when I was a little girl and my Nana had a bunch growing in her garden by the desert. Years later I would carry on this tradition of growing it in my own garden and introducing to my children just how special this plant is.
It has soothed many cuts and burns over the years. Just cut a leaf from the plant, trim off edges and cut down the middle to get to the healing gel inside and use it over cuts and burns.
It also makes a great moisturizer and you can even leave it in your hair as a conditioner, then rinse out. Make sure to do a patch test first though, just in case you have an allergy to the plant.
Aloe does well outdoors only in frost-free regions. If you live somewhere cold, you can grow Aloe inside in a pot close to a window. Their blooms come in several colors. Our plants bloom a coral color, which the hummingbirds love.
Aloe plants produce offsets (Babies) that can be transplanted. Put transplants in a sunny location, wait a week to water and keep soil on the dry side. Over watering will kill your little plant. You will get so many little Aloe babies from your plant that you will not be able to keep up with them. I take empty little tomato sauce cans and plant the babies in them, then pass them out to neighbors and friends letting them know about all the health benefits of Aloe. I like to think I am passing a little bit of my Nana’s knowledge on in this world that way.
If you do keep your plant inside please make sure to keep it out of reach of your furry family members. Aloe Vera is toxic to both cats and dogs. Happy gardening.
DIY- Old drawers/new shelves
A visit to an Arizona cowboy store
Frugal Fall decorating
Spooky tabletop yarn trees