Aloe arborescens | ‘Candelabra Aloe’, ‘Krantz Aloe’, ‘Tree Aloe’ | 25 seeds
Native to much of southern Africa, Aloe arborescens (syn. Aloe perfoliata var. arborescens, Catevala arborescens) is a popular and attractive flowering succulent of the Asphodelaceae family. Commonly known as the ‘Candelabra Aloe’, ‘Krantz Aloe’, ‘Mountain Bush Aloe’, ‘Torch Aloe’ and ‘Tree Aloe’, arborescens comprises part of the Arborescentes – several closely related Aloe species, which also include Aloe mutabilis and Aloe pluridens.
Growing to a maximum height of approximately three and a half metres, arborescens is a branching perennial species which forms succulent, green-blue leaves which are slightly spiked along the edges and arranged in rosettes. Gorgeously colourful, cylindrical flowers – orange-red in colour and especially attractive to creatures such as bees, birds and butterflies – bloom from mid-autumn to early spring, dependent on the growing location. Arborescens is definitely visually appealing (turning all sorts of bizarre colours if stressed!) and the ‘Variegata’ cultivar was awarded the British Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit.
Well-adapted to a highly variable habitat range (the third largest distribution among the genus) in USDA Hardiness Zones 9-11, Aloe arborescens generally prefers to grow in rocky and mountainous areas, anywhere from sea level to high mountaintops where there’s a minimum temperature of 10°C (50°F). As with many of the Trichocereus cacti, this species is traditionally used as a fence or hedge-plant.
All Aloes that we’ve grown are pretty easy to get going from seed (or stem or rhizome cuttings). Plant in mildly acidic to mildly alkaline soil, spacing the plants roughly one to two metres apart to allow them ample room to grow to maturity. Situate them in full sun and water in regular but moderate amounts.
All the seed sold by Arkham’s Botanical was freshly and ethically sourced