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Aloe Vera Plants decentigrate ?

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by kittenspawn on July 07, 2005 09:18 PM
Hi, Hope someone can help with this.

Every year i buy a new aloe Vera plant, i care for it, keeping it by a window and watering when the soil is dry and fertilizing in the summer every other month as is directed on the aloe care tag i get with each plant. all seems fine, then suddenly (with ever aloe plant for the last 8 YEARS)the whole plant decentigrates! every leaf turns dark green and when touched they are so fragile they explode water everywhere! the roots seem fine but the plant it self never regrows. I end up having to replace the plant every 6 months or so. I've tried repotting them, moving the plant to a warmer or cooler location, even underwatering and over watering and EVERYTIME, after 4-6 month the same thing happens. The Store i get them from is dumbfounded and since it's more than 90 days after i bought the plant, no refund/replacement. I've Goggled and searched and can find NOTHING about this happening. does anyone know WHY this is happening and how i can stop it.... Much thanks!

by tkhooper on July 07, 2005 10:16 PM
I'm going to assume you are in a high humidity area. Either that or you have a humidifier or a water tray somewhere and the plant is getting it's extra moisture that way. I'll tell you what keeps mine happy and see if there is any information that comes in handy for you.

Mine is in a southeast facing window with lots of light, I use a cactus potting soil that does not retain moisture. the pot I have it in is very wide and shallow about 12" across and 5" down. They like to be rootbound but mine isn't that big yet. I wait until I can dig my index finger down to the second knuckle and come up dry before I water and then I give it a good drink. I remove all standing water from the saucer 20 minutes after watering.

Mine has a very definite dormant period where it will easily go a month without water. But I am in a humid area so that has something to do with it I am sure. I use a week solution of water soluable miracle grow house plant food every two weeks when it is growing and then nothing when it is not.

I hope something in this post is of assistance.
by Blaise on July 08, 2005 03:49 AM
I would definitely agree with tkhooper there, I have relatives that live in humid places and they experience the same thing.

Blaise xx

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by kittenspawn on July 08, 2005 06:24 AM
Thanks so much, I am in a humid location.

I'll try the cactus mix too (just saw some at the store today for the first time!) and moving it to the end of the house furthest away from the kitchen. I used miracal grow, but just package directions...and watered them well after repotting..betcha that's the trouble.looks liek i'm doing EVERYTHING wrong. when i get my new plants, i'll use cactus mix and water less often. I also will not repot them unless nessesary..i had NO IDEA they liked being root bound..I betcha the same thing happened with my cactuses..i just found one of these all flattened and odd the suculents are..but they have defences against my 4 cats [Smile] thanks for the advise!
by RugbyHukr on July 08, 2005 08:15 AM
Try not using miracle grow. Just use a regular weak fertilizer. Your plants may be trying to grow too fast. Most succulents grow slowly. They may put out offspring quickly, but they grow slowly.

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by newlife on July 08, 2005 09:32 AM
I have always heard that Aloe plants are toxic to cats- I keep mine way up high as a precaution.
by Blaise on July 08, 2005 05:46 PM
I have an old pomeranian dog and he seems to love eating my aloe's. My friend's dog also eats them, I don't think its toxic to dogs...causes a stomach upset if they eat too much and my dog's quite greedy so I keep them up high too.

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by tkhooper on July 08, 2005 06:19 PM
Have you tried adding a veggie to the doggies diet? Macho used to like broccoli. Usually when dogs and cats go after house plants it's something they aren't getting in their diet. Just a thought.
by kittenspawn on July 08, 2005 06:31 PM
Hee hee.. My Maine Coon LOVES Split Peas, eats them like they're treats (after they've been soaked, of course) and they actually DON'T make him sick. But i'd check with your Vet, Blaise, before altering your Pets diet in anyway. Or It looks like has an "ask" section, and your vet won't do free phone help, mine won't, good thing my mom works for a vet [Smile]

I like the cacti and Aloe cuz they have little pooky things,(spines?) and all for felines steer clear. Never had the cats eat them, although i did lose one Aloe and One cactus when the new kitty got poked and took his vengance ...kitty scream then smashing terra cotta at three AM, there's an alarm clock that NEVER fails [Smile]

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