South African aloe

Aloe ferox | Also known as: Cape aloes, Bitter aloe | Rating: 0 votes | Print / Pdf

A spoon full of sugar will help this bitter medicinal plant go down.

Aloe ferox is a stunning plant from South Africa. It's also known as bitter aloe and cape aloe. It is used in the production of cosmetics and as a medication. It's a large and impressive plant, growing up to ten feet in height. It has long pointed spiky leaves that grow in a rosette shape, with red spines along the edges. Each leaf can be up to a metre in length. From the centre of the rosette grows a striking spike of red or orange flowers. It's not too hard to grow, but will need to be grown under glass in cooler climates although you can move it outdoors in warmer weather. Sadly aloe ferox is an endangered species.

Rate it:
Known dangers?
  • no
Height [m]
  • 2 - 3
Spread [m]
  • 1.5
Dominant flower colour
  • Orange
Flower Fragrance
  • No, neutral please
Flowering seasons
  • Early summer
  • Mid summer
  • Late summer
Foliage in spring
  • Green
Foliage in summer
  • Green
Foliage in Autumn
  • Green
Foliage in winter
  • Green
Propagation methods
  • seed
  • offsets
Growth habit
  • Rosette
  • Single stemmed
  • Acidic
  • Neutral
  • Alkaline
Hardiness zone
  • Z10-15
Heat zone
  • H12-10
Winter temperatures [°C]
  • -1 - 0
Heat days
  • 150 - 210
  • well-drained
Soil type
  • sandy
  • loams
Sun requirements
  • Full sun
  • Sheltered
Standard category
  • Exotic, house plants & other
  • House plants
Grown for
  • Ornamental Foliage
Creative category
  • Kid Approved
  • For Beginners
Garden type
  • Indoor or winter garden
  • Containers
Gardening expertise
  • beginner
Time to reach full size
  • up to 10 years