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Large Short-leaved Aloe

Aloe brevifolia var. depressa

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Large Short-leaved Aloe (Aloe brevifolia var. depressa) at Thies Farm & Greenhouses

Large Short-leaved Aloe

Large Short-leaved Aloe

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Plant Height:  12 inches

Flower Height:  24 inches

Spread:  4 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  9a


Beautiful large rosettes of short, succulent sea green leaves that are flushed with pink; clumps may be several feet wide; produces erect racemes of tubular orange-red flowers from late fall into winter; a wonderful garden or container accent

Ornamental Features

Large Short-leaved Aloe's attractive succulent sword-like leaves remain bluish-green in color with showy pink variegation throughout the year. It features dainty racemes of orange tubular flowers with red overtones rising above the foliage from late fall to late winter. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Landscape Attributes

Large Short-leaved Aloe is an herbaceous evergreen perennial with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its wonderfully bold, coarse texture can be very effective in a balanced garden composition.

This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and usually looks its best without pruning, although it will tolerate pruning. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration;

  • Spiny

Large Short-leaved Aloe is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Mass Planting
  • Rock/Alpine Gardens
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Large Short-leaved Aloe will grow to be about 12 inches tall at maturity extending to 24 inches tall with the flowers, with a spread of 4 feet. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 40 years or more.

This plant should only be grown in full sunlight. It prefers dry to average moisture levels with very well-drained soil, and will often die in standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in sandy soils. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This species is not originally from North America. It can be propagated by division.

Large Short-leaved Aloe is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Massing  Rock  Garden  Container 
Flowers  Foliage Color  Texture 
Ornamental Features