Thursday, August 12, 2010
Aloe Vera ( Liliaceae )is a succulent plant with no stem, just thick fleshy leaves containing special sacs full of gel which oozes out when the the leaves are cut or broken. It flowers rarely and grows 2 to 3 ft tall.
Aloes should grow 3 years before you attempt to collect the gel.
They are not cold hardy except in some southern climates they can survive outside if caution is taken for protection.
I grow them in pots and move into a sheltered location before the first frost.
The gel of Aloe Vera is anti-inflammatory saponins and antimicrobial, vitamins C and E, soothing salycilic acid and minerals.
This plant is a must to have on hand for sun exposure, bug bites, burns, eczema,shingles, and other skin rashes that need speedy relief and healing.
It's often mixed with cucumber juice and in this form can be drunk to help immune function, digestive function, and conditions like irritable bowel syndrome and Chron's disease.
It is wonderful to break a leaf and apply the gel directly to the face and arms after being in the sun and/or water.
Aloe Vera doesn't like too much water and thrives in a location where filtered sun is available...loves the shade in the afternoon. Also likes being left in one location...not too much moving around.