Since summer is just around the corner and the sun is burning hotter this year than it ever has lets talk about Aloe vera. All though the studies on Aloe are inconclusive the uses of it dates back to over six thousand years ago. In ancient Egypt it was considered a sacred plant because the juices of the Aloe plant was believed to held the secrets to beauty, health and immortality. It was known as the plant of eternity.
Aloe vera was used and worshiped by many cultures. In the 16th century it was one of sixteen holy plants worshiped by Indians. Columbus grew aloe aboard his ships and Alexander the great used aloe in battle. Ancient Chinese referred to it as the “Method of Harmony” were as the Japanese considered it as the “Royal Plant” and the Maya Indians called it “The Fountain of Youth”.
Aloe is native to Africa and grown commercially in Mexico and southern parts of Texas. Through out history Aloe has been known for treating burns, wounds and abrasions. Some studies show that the juices of the Aloe plant just might hold some promise for treating diabetes and reducing levels of triglycerides and blood sugar.
Now let’s talk about growing Aloe. It is hardy in zones 8-11 and is intolerant of heavy frost and snow. For those of us that don’t live in those zone aloe does great as a potted indoor plant as long as you have it in a well-drained sandy potting soil and in a bright sunny place. Mine set on my kitchen counter by the window and does great. Potted plants should be completely dry before watering. So even if you don’t have a green thumb you can grow aloe. Aloe vera is for sure on my must have plant list.