Yes, another beginner with an Aloe.

Discussion in 'Cacti and Succulents' started by Weeed, Oct 17, 2007.

  1. Weeed

    Weeed Member

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    Hello there,

    I have a question in two parts and would be most grateful if someone could help. First, can you tell me exactly what this (Aloe?) is? And second, without being facetious how can I tell in future. When I look at the colour plates in my books on succulents when trying to find a particular plant there are always three or four it could be, but nothing that ever looks bang on. I know that this is probably a really dumb question, but I can genuinely never quite figure out what is exactly what.

    Many thanks in advance,

    Weeed
     

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  2. markinwestmich

    markinwestmich Active Member

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    As far as identifying a particular species of Aloe, it can be difficult given that there are over 300 species...and yes, some look quite similar. In addition, young plants may have different foliage than older plants. That said, unless you are a collector, of sorts, and are specifically seeking the rare and unusual, most of what you will find at the local nursery are the few that are normally cultivated.

    You can spend hours on different web sites and browsing through books and still not find one that looks exactly like yours.

    I'll look around and see what I can find.
     
  3. Weeed

    Weeed Member

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    Hi,

    Thanks a lot for your letter. Very kind of you. At least now I know that making an ID isn't just a matter of having the right book or knowing some botanical formula.

    All the best,

    Weeed
     
  4. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member 10 Years

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    At first I thought Aloe broomii but that has sharp red spines. But as mark said it is young yet and they change so much as they grow,plus there's a good chance its a hybrid.
     
  5. Weeed

    Weeed Member

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    Hello GreenLarry,

    Many thanks. Took a look at Aloe broomii online just now and I can see the resemblance, other than the red/brown margin. It is similar in overall shape, so you could be right about it being a hybrid. Trouble is, photographs in books never quite look like my examples.

    Weeed
     
  6. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member 10 Years

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    Thing is there are so many Aloes and many different forms. It could be a juvenille form of a large growing species like Aloe striatula,medusa(a tree Aloe),adigratana or even daweii 'Jacob's Ladder'. If the leaves were more fleshy I'd say concinna was a possibility but its more than likely a young large Aloe. Even so they can still be kept as small pot plants. My broomii is small and cute at the moment but eventually it changes and becomes huge,if allowed.
     
  7. Weeed

    Weeed Member

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    I can see how it could be an immature example of any of these. Am I right in thinking that a close-up of the "teeth" might be an indicator? In most pictures you cannot quite make them out.
     
  8. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member 10 Years

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    Not really. Most Aloes have teeth even Aloe vera,and as an example both ferox and broomii have similar thorns. (The only distinctive one I know of is aculeata which has white rings at the base of each spine)
    Some Aloes have striations running the length of the leaf (Aloe garienpensis and striata) and some have spots. Also many have spots when young,losing them as they mature. Its a minefield out there!
     
  9. GreenLarry

    GreenLarry Active Member 10 Years

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    Hmmm I'm actually thinking it could be Aloe nobilis or mitriformis(the 2 are often confused),i just received a similar looking Aloe.
     
  10. Bertrand

    Bertrand Member

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    Yes, I'll go along with the nobilis. Many thanks.
     

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