Aloe Succulents

Aloe is a large group of succulent plants with rosettes of thick, juicy leaves and bloom spires topped with beautiful clusters of mostly red or yellow hummingbird-attracting flowers. Many popular Aloes tolerate frost or short freezes.


Aloes form a large genus of over 400 species of plants with rosettes of thick, juicy leaves which help them survive seasonally dry climates. Succulent Aloe leaves have a somewhat waxy surface, and vary in color from grayish blue to bright green, sometimes striped, spotted, or mottled.

While some aloe species have tree-like stems, many form low, spreading colonies. Their tall flower bloom stalks are topped with very beautiful red, orange, yellow, or pink tubular flowers in summer, fall, or winter, which are favorites of hummingbirds.

Eye Catching Aloe

See All Photos


Photo By: ?? Andrew Jorgensen

Silver Ridge

Photo By: ?? Andrew Jorgensen

Pink Blush

Photo By: ?? Andrew Jorgensen


Photo By: ?? Andrew Jorgensen


Photo By: ?? Andrew Jorgensen


Photo By: ?? Andrew Jorgensen


Photo By: © Andrew Jorgensen

Polyphylla aloe

Fire Ranch

Aloe flowers

Grassy Lassie

Aloe vera gel

Aloes, especially the smaller kinds, do well in rock or hillside gardens, raised borders and beds, groundcovers, wall plantings, and containers, both indoors and out.

Common Aloe Succulent Types

Who can possibly narrow the list of great garden Aloes?

The “burn plant” (Aloe vera) is probably the most widely-grown species for its durability as a potted plant and the folk medicinal use of its thick, gelatinous sap. The slow-spreading clump of easy-to-divide offsets, each getting up to two feet tall with many long, thick light green toothed leaves sometimes flecked with white spots.  

Blue Aloe (Aloe glauca) makes a thick clump up to about 8 inches tall and wider, with narrow, upright gray-blue leaves, while Sunset Aloe (A. dorotheae) turns bright reddish orange when given sun.

Soap aloe (A. maculate. or A. saponaria), also known as zebra aloe because of its stripes of leaf spots, forms a foot-tall spreading clump of rosettes. Tiger Aloe (A. variegata) is a small frost-tolerant plant with triangular, lightly toothed leaves with irregular bands of raised white spots; it looks very much like Haworthia. These three can tolerate frost and short mild freezes, and are often grown in sandy soils along southeastern Atlantic and Gulf Coasts.

The multiple-trunk Torch or Tree Aloe (A. arborescens) grows to eight feet or more tall with downward curved leaves and brilliant orange-red fall flowers. It and the short-trunked Cape Aloe (A. ferox) can tolerate down to the lower 20s. 

The unusual climbing aloe (A. ciliaris) is vine-like with long, narrow, toothed leaves that curve downward to help the plant clasp to supports. Its stems can grow over 20 feet long, and flower mostly in the spring. The plant climbs palm trunks, and can tolerate quite a bit of shade.

Several Aloe species tolerate cold weather, down to the teens. Hardy Aloe (A. striatula), lace Aloe (A. aristata) and the incredibly beautiful spiral Aloe (A. polyphylla) are cold hardy to 10 F, and are often grown outdoors all year even in well-drained pockets in English garden walls where they sometimes get covered with snow.

How to Plant and Grow Aloes

Aloes thrive in full sun, some with protection from mid-day sun; larger kinds grown in mild, frost-free areas tolerate the most sun, but in hot climates they all need protection from intense mid-day sun or they will scorch or burn - especially the smaller species which in nature grow in the shadows of rocks and other vegetation. In shade they tend to lean towards light.

Succulent Aloe species grow well with occasional watering, but can easily rot in areas with high rainfall or if they are kept wet in pots. Increase garden or potting soil drainage by adding generous amounts of sharp sand, pumice, perlite, grit, or expanded clay soil conditioner.

While single-trunk aloes can grow perfectly well for many years, those that spread with offsets should be divided regularly to keep them healthy and strong.  

Next Up

Succulent Plants

Succulent plants are those with juicy leaves or stems for holding water through long periods of drought. They come in a vast array of shapes, colors, sizes, unique features, and temperature tolerance, are suitable for growing in dry garden areas or in containers both indoors and out.

Growing Succulents Indoors

Nearly anyone wondering how to grow succulents indoors can look no farther than their own grandmother’s windowsill, which probably boasted at least one.

Hen and Chicks Succulents

Forget proper Latin names of plants; this never-ending debate among horticulturists and botanists gets thrown out the window when it comes to common or local names for plants. Case in point: Hens and chicks succulents.

Rare and Unusual Succulents

Succulent plants are strange enough, but some go way beyond the same old, same old kinds grown in gardens and containers around the country.

Best Soil for Succulents

No two gardeners use the same potting mix for succulents, but they all start with similar basic ingredients that help plants hold a little moisture and fertilizer while allowing extra water to drain away very quickly.

How to Plant Succulents

Succulents are easy to grow, but should be planted properly to get the most out of their versatility.

What is a Succulent Plant

Succulent plants, from tropical to cold hardy, come in astounding variety of sometimes bizarre shapes, colors, and unique features; they have fleshy leaves or stems which help them store water for weeks or months.

Succulent Gardens

Succulent gardens, both indoors and out, are interesting, low maintenance, and easy, and contain a variety of sometimes-bizarre plants in many shapes, sizes, colors, and features. The most crucial things they need are bright light, and well-drained soils that never stay wet.

Pruning and Trimming Succulents

Succulent plants often need pruning to remove unruly or overgrown growth, and their dead or dying stems, leaves, and flower stems trimmed.

Growing Succulents Outdoors

Create the right conditions for growing exotic-looking hardy succulents outdoors in an garden, anywhere in the country.

Get Social With Us

We love to DIY. You love to DIY. Let's get together.

Discover Made + Remade

See the latest DIY projects, catch up on trends and meet more cool people who love to create.

Make It. Fix It. Learn It. Find It.