Aloe aristata [AL-oh a-ris-TAH-tuh], is a hardy succulent with distinct leaves.
In English-speaking countries, this “aloe plant” goes by the following common names:
- Lace Aloe
- Guinea-fowl Aloe
- Torch plant
The correct name is Aristaloe aristata [air-ISST-AL-oh a-ris-TAH-tuh] but most know the plant by its synonym ‘Aloe aristata.’ The plant carries a relationship more with the Haworthia genus than the Aloe Vera.
Like the China Aster (Callistephus Chinensis), Aristaloe aristata is the lone species in the genus Aristaloe.
Grown primarily grown for its attractive succulent rosettes of yellow spots on green leaves with soft white spines.
It belongs to the Aristaloe genus of flowering plants native to South Africa. It commonly called the “slippery one.”
The stemless plant produces long, soft, succulent leaves with tubular orange flowers. It’s another unique plant deserving proper care.
Use these tips to keep your Lace Aloe healthy.
Aloe Aristata Care
Size and Growth
The hardy Aloe torch plant is slow-growing. It produces triangular succulent leaves forming in a rosette around the base of the plant.
The fleshy leaves are green with yellowish-white spots and teeth along the edges.
It’s recommended for USDA hardiness zone 7b – 10b and appreciates the warmth. If you live in a temperate climate, move the plant inside during the winter.
The plant doesn’t get very big. It looks like a dwarf version of larger plants in the Aloe genus.
With proper care, the leaves may reach about 6″ to 12″ inches in length. The dense rosette forming may spread about two feet.
Flowering and Fragrance
The Lace Aloe produces flowers in the early summer. The tubular orange-red flowers don’t produce a scent and may not last very long. Luckily, the stalk of bright orange flowers should appear each year.
Light and Temperature
This plant grows best in full sun in warm regions and prefers dry weather. It doesn’t need a lot of sunlight. Keep the plant away from direct sunlight.
If grown outdoors, choose a spot with plenty of sunlight without strong direct sunlight. When grown indoors, consider choosing a west-facing or east-facing window.
Indoor growth requires normal room temperature. When grown outdoors, it cannot tolerate the cold.
If temperatures drop below 50 degrees Fahrenheit during the winter, you’ll need to bring it indoors.
Watering and Feeding
Throughout the spring, summer, and fall, regularly water Aristata plant. During the active growth seasons, add some liquid fertilizer.
While the plant needs regular watering, remember this is a succulent and is drought tolerant. Allow the top half-inch of soil to dry between watering.
In the winter, the plant only needs enough water to keep the soil moist.
Try to pour the water around the base of the plant instead of over the leaves. If water collects in the leaves, you’ll increase the risk of rot.
Soil and Transplanting
For optimal growth, repot the plant each year at the start of the spring season. Use a commercial cactus soil mix with excellent drainage or make your own potting mix.
If you decide to make your own sandy soil mixture, mix three parts regular potting soil to one part coarse sand, perlite, or pumice.
Transplanting doesn’t require any special steps. Prepare the new pot and then gently transplant the cactus to its new home.
Maintenance and Grooming
No grooming is needed. The only ‘grooming” is to remove dead leaves or flowers.
How to Propagate Aloe Aristata
The easiest method of propagating Lace Aloe is to collect the offsets. The “pups” or offsets can easily be removed in the spring when transplanting the plant.
Remove the offsets from the base of the plant. If possible, look for offsets that have already started to form rosettes of leaves.
Plant the offsets in the same cactus mix used for the main plant. They should be planted about ¾”-inch deep and covered with a sprinkling of sand or perlite. This helps reduce rot.
Place the easy to grow offsets away from direct sunlight and water moderately. Within a few weeks, you should start to notice new growth.
Aloe Aristata Disease or Pests Problems
The main pests and disease issues include rot, mealybugs, and scale insects.
Rot is typically caused by giving the plant too much water.
Use a fungicide to attempt to treat the problem, but you’ll also need to correct the problem causing the rot.
Decrease the amount of water used for each watering.
Pests may appear as small white or brown patches on the leaves. These patches may be mealy bugs or scale insects.
If you detect scale insects or mealybugs. Dip the toothpick or cotton swab in alcohol and then wipe the pests off the leaves.
Suggested Aloe Aristata Uses
This dwarf plant looks great by itself on a shelf or small table. Also planting with other succulents in a group, succulent rock garden or planter to create a showcase of low-maintenance succulents.