What are the aloe vera plant care problems? How is the aloe vera plant maintained? Top reasons for problems growing aloe vera indoors? How much should I water it? How do you repot it? Cutting? What to do when an aloe vera plant turns brown? Or with yellowing leaves? What should I do if my aloe vera plant collapses?

I. How to plant aloe vera?

To plant the aloe vera plant you need a cutting or a clump of an offshoot of this plant that contains roots. 

The planting requires some tools and equipment to be obtained as well as steps to be followed to have good results.

Useful equipment for planting aloe in a pot:

  • A relatively large clay pot with a hole in the bottom
  • Clay balls or gravel
  • A special cactus potting soil

The balls will be used to constitute a drainage system to allow the water to flow to the bottom of the pot and avoid the rotting of the roots of the plant which is of succulent nature (lives in arid environments). 

In order to plant the aloe, place a portion of clay balls at the bottom of the pot at about 10% of the height of the pot. Then pour in the previously dried (not wet) potting soil, filling the bowl to 70%.

Put the roots of the aloe vera cutting at this level and cover them with the potting soil, leaving a few centimeters of empty space at the top of the pot. This will help you to fill the remaining space of the other part of the marbles for better drainage.

II. Potting the aloe vera plant

When plants grow, they need a new living space larger than the first one in order not to suffocate.

The same rule applies to aloe vera when it reaches a certain size of root volume or it will need to be moved from one larger pot to another.

Repotting aloe vera starts by removing the plant from its pot, and taking care to leave its roots in one block. On the other hand, you must remove the shoots if there are any, and then replant them alone in other pots that are suitable for their volume.

Then place the aloe vera to be repotted in a larger pot as if you were going to plant it for the first time, following the planting steps mentioned at the beginning.

You should know that the repotting of aloe vera is done about once every two years.

III. Watering the aloe vera

Since aloe vera is a plant that normally lives in relatively warm areas, it has learned to retain water within its leaves.

It is easy to deduce that the frequency of watering should not be too repetitive and obviously changes according to the months and seasons.

It is important to know that a lack of watering will make the plants yellow, on the other hand, the excess will make brown spots appear, hence the need to respect the quantity of water to put according to the weather and the seasons.

In winter, the aloe needs only one watering per month because of the abundant humidity. It is even possible to postpone this amount of time a little more when the temperatures are low.

On the other hand, during the summer, a plant grown in a pot or in its garden will need to be watered every 15 days, or even once a week when it is very hot.

A good indicator to be sure of good watering is the substrate. Indeed, you can check it from time to time to know its level of humidity.

Finally, the last recommendation is that you use fresh water or rainwater and avoid tap water if possible.

IV. Cutting of the aloe vera

In the explanation of the cutting of aloe vera, you will see that there are steps and actions in common with potting and planting.

To begin, take an aloe vera plant that is about two to three years old and try to gently pull out the offspring that are on the tips of the potting soil.

Get pots (preferably of clay) to match the number of shoots extracted and equip them with potting soil and a drainage system.

This can be gravel or clay balls but also drainage felts.  They will allow a more suitable water flow.

Put each cutting in its “vase” and add soil until the roots are buried.

 V. How to care for aloe vera

The maintenance of aloe vera is based mainly on the way it is exposed to the sun and the water that is given to it.

Although it needs light to live, excessive exposure to the sun may cause it to suffer somewhat.

On the other hand, suitable watering will allow the plant to grow without problems. Potting and cuttings of the aloe play to some degree an important role in the maintenance of the plant.

1. Curved Aloe Vera Leaves

When the leaves of your aloe vera plant bend at the base or in the middle, there is not enough light for your plant.

Aloe vera likes at least 6 hours of bright natural light for healthy growth and lack of sufficient light leads to a weak aloe vera plant with bent leaves.

There are several ways to manage aloe vera leaf bending including; moving your potted aloe vera plants to a brighter location, especially during dark and cold winters so they receive enough light, placing your aloe vera near a sunny window, and rotating your aloe vera plants every couple of weeks just to make sure the plants are receiving light evenly on all sides.

2. Maintenance of the yellowing plant

There are several explanations as to why aloe vera turns yellow, but there is almost no doubt about the influence of its exposure to the sun.

The plant can withstand it when the red disc is less intense and the temperature is not too high, however, when the temperature exceeds 35 degrees, the aloe leaves turn yellow.

If this happens to your plant, the yellowing may last, however you can save it from wilting by applying just a few simple tips.

First, place the pot containing it in front of a window to allow the plant to receive sunlight without the rays making it wilt.

Then, if the heat persists and summer is not over, water the aloe once a week, while checking the humidity level of the soil daily.

3. Aloe Vera plant turns gray

Aloe vera plants turn gray when they are in a state of shock. This happens especially when there is a sudden change in its environment, such as a drastic increase in sunlight when it is moved outside for some sun.

Although aloe vera plants can survive in the sun, you must harden them off before keeping them in the sun.

You need to slowly acclimate your aloe vera plants by providing a slight shade adjustment before placing them in the hot sun. Otherwise, you will end up with a sunburned aloe vera plant.

However, keep your gray aloe vera plant in the shade for a few days to allow it to recover.

4. Taking care of browning aloe vera

The browning of aloe vera is due to overwatering or extra water retention in the substrate.

Again, it should be remembered that aloe vera is a fat plant that lives in warm climates, hence the need to not overwater it.

Once we know the origin of the browning of the leaves, we have to look for a remedy to save it.

The first thing to do is to continually check the humidity of the soil and extend the watering intervals.

If the problem persists and other brown spots appear on other leaves, you must remove the plant from the pot and cut the soft and rotten roots.

Finally, you should check at each watering the effectiveness of the drainage, while being sure that the water easily infiltrates the bottom of the pot.

5. A soft aloe vera plant with drooping leaves

There are many causes of falling leaves on aloe vera. The first and most common cause is improper watering.

When you overwater your aloe vera plant, the soil stays wet all the time, creating conditions for root rot.

Over time, as the disease progresses, the roots are damaged, so the plant is unable to absorb the necessary nutrients. This leads to a nutrient deficiency resulting in the yellowing of the aloe leaves.

Secondly, even though aloe vera can survive long periods of drought, it does not mean that you do not water it completely.

Not watering your aloe vera plant leaves the growing medium dry and this affects the absorption of essential elements by the roots.

Other causes of yellow or droopy leaves on aloe vera plants include poor nutritional supplementation, insufficient light, and temperature changes.

6. how to deal with the sagging aloe vera plant

Sagging aloe vera can be due to several reasons, including wilting caused by overwatering or lack of water. But not only that!

The problem can be caused by a lack of light which is essential to the plants and also by an unstable temperature.

In order not to let the aloe wilt completely, it is imperative to provide it with the necessary elements of life. Namely, a frequency of watering that suits the season and the climate as it was mentioned in the previous headings.

It is also necessary to expose it regularly to natural light and to place it in an environment where the temperature is close to 20 degrees.

Finally, the aloe vera plant should be repotted and cuttings are taken at a certain age to allow it to grow properly and without sagging.  

7. Leaves and mushy roots on the aloe vera plant

Soft leaves and roots on the aloe vera plant are an indication of root rot due to overwatering.

This is a bacterial infection that causes watery spots on the aloe leaves. As decay intensifies inside the plants, the leaves become soft and collapse.

Therefore, water your aloe only when the growing medium is almost completely dry (in the summer), do not let your potted aloe rest on a saucer full of water, and be sure to use well-drained potting soil.

Although it is rare to bring infected aloe plants back to life, you can save yours by repotting early in the disease’s progression.

Repot your aloe plant in sterile, barely moist potting soil to reduce moisture in the pot and prevent further fungal attacks on the roots.

8. Aloe Vera leaves become thin and flat

Naturally, aloe vera leaves should grow upward away from the base of the plant. So if yours have flat leaves, it may be due to a lack of light.

Even though aloe vera plants turn brown with too much light, you need to make sure your aloe vera plants get at least 6 hours of sunlight a day.

On the other hand, the thin, curly leaves of aloe vera tell you that the moisture level in the soil is low and your plants are dry.

This forces the plants to use their fluids to stay nourished. In this case, water your plants properly and always maintain a constant moisture level.

9. The Plant Is Very Tall & Thin

Just like folded and flat aloe vera leaves, a tall and thin aloe vera plant is an indication of insufficient light.

You may have placed your plant in a dull location where it does not have access to direct sunlight.

If this is the case, try moving your aloe vera plant to a sunny location to improve.

Also consider repotting your aloe plant, especially if it outgrows the container it was grown in.

10. other tips for the care of aloe vera

There is some ambiguity and misunderstanding about the issue of exposing aloe vera to the sun. We have explained throughout this article that this plant must be protected from direct sunlight, even though they are fat, succulent and originally come from hot countries!

Well, if the cutting you buy was raised in an outdoor and sunny environment, it is possible that you expose your aloe to the sun.

If, on the other hand, it was raised indoors, you should avoid exposing your aloe vera to the sun.

In case you delay beyond 2 years to repot your plant, it is interesting when you proceed to this action to add fertilizer for vigorous growth.

This fertilizer should be added from April to October at a frequency of once every two months.

For the culture of aloe avoid trying to grow it from a leaf. Instead, follow the steps and method mentioned in this article, either planting aloe vera from a cutting.

VI. Top Reasons for Problems Growing Aloe Vera Indoors

1. Overwatering

Aloe vera has fat, plump leaves that are full of gel. They store water as well as thick roots.

These plants are prone to root rot, especially when grown indoors. The leaves turn brown and limp when overwatered. Simply put, they scramble.

Water your Aloe vera when it is about 3/4 dry. This could be every 2-4 weeks in the summer, depending on growing conditions, pot size, and soil mix.

2. Lack of light

Aloe vera needs bright, natural light to grow and thrive. It is not a low-light houseplant.

Lack of light weakens the plant and the leaves may wrinkle or fold at the base or in the middle. A leggy growth habit and/or pale leaves are other indications of insufficient light.

Put your aloe vera near a sunny window. You can put it in the window if it is not a sunny, warm exposure like a south or west window.

3. Over-fertilizing

Over fertilization can cause your aloe vera plant to grow suddenly with an insufficient root system to provide enough water and nutrients to the plant.

So remember to put your plant in a suitable environment.

4. Gets lots of suns (window in full sun all day)

While most plants like aloe vera like medium to high light when growing indoors, being against the hot glass will burn the leaves.

Because of all the liquid in the leaves, they are prone to sunburn.

If large brown spots appear on the leaves, or if they turn orange/brown, your Aloe vera is getting too much sun.

Move your plant out of or away from a hot, sunny window. In a southern or western exposure is fine, but not in the window.

5. Bad planting soil

This goes hand in hand with the above point. An Aloe vera plant prefers a light, well aerated, and well-drained mix.

If it is planted in a mixture that is too heavy, it will be much more prone to excess water and eventually rot.

When replanting your Aloe vera, it is advisable to do so in a mixture of succulents and cacti so that the water flows through and the roots are well aerated.

6. Pruning or Harvesting Heavily

Heavy pruning or harvesting can cause damage to the plant. Excessive pruning can shorten the life of the aloe vera, affect its natural growth and cause wounds that do not heal properly.

If your plant has been improperly pruned, it will lead to the proliferation of microorganisms and bacteria, which can even lead to the rotting of its leaves.

7. Aloe Vera plant already weak on purchase

Being kept too dry, too wet, or not receiving enough light will weaken a plant over time.

If your aloe vera plant has been kept in poor conditions for too long (which may happen sooner than you think), it may not recover.

Choose a healthy plant. If the leaves are yellow, have brown spots, and/or are bent, don’t buy.

8. Cold Temperatures

The temperature tolerance level of aloe vera is high compared to other common plants that die easily from weather conditions that are too high or too low.

The beautiful aloe vera is a hardy plant commonly grown outdoors or indoors and extremely easy to maintain.

However, as hardy, as it is, aloe vera is also sensitive to extremely high and cold temperatures that could affect its growth.

VII. Other Questions about aloe vera plant care problems

1. How do I know if my aloe vera plant is healthy?

Healthy roots should be tan and white, succulent and numerous. If the root tips are visible, they should be white in color.

Root rot is one of the common signs that your Aloe Vera is dying. If your plant’s root is brown or black and crumbly, this is a sign that your plant is not healthy and is dying.

2. How to Revive a Dying Aloe Vera Plant?

Cutting off the leaves encourages more aloe vera leaves to grow and the plant can recover. For aloe vera that has been in the shade for too long, the leaves are too weakened to recover and no amount of sunlight will help.

The only way to revive it is to take cuttings from the healthiest leaves to propagate.

3. Is aloe vera an indoor or outdoor plant?

This moisture-rich plant thrives outdoors year-round only in the warmest regions (zones 9 to 10).

In other regions, aloe grows best indoors as a houseplant, and some gardeners move it outside for the summer.

Indoors, place aloe in a well-lit area during the warmer seasons of the year.

4. How to Fix Root Rot In Aloe?

  • Move your aloe vera to a better lighting condition
  • Let the soil dry
  • Take the plant out and raise the root system to get rid of the soil
  • Cut off the damaged, soft and mushy roots
  • Repot into a new container with fresh potting soil
  • Make sure the drainage system in the new pot is good

5. Does the aloe vera plant heal itself?

No, aloe vera does not heal itself. It is up to you to maintain it if you notice any signs of disease in the plant.

6. Why does my aloe plant not stand up

Aloe flop occurs if your plant doesn’t get enough sunlight and the leaves or stem don’t have the strength to grow into the pleasing vertical shape you expect.

The leaves appear limp, flattened, and elongated. Another common reason for aloe to droop is excessive watering or soggy soil, especially in winter.

7. Why are the tips of my aloe plant drying out

The tips of aloe vera plants dry out because there is not enough space in the pot and the plant cannot get enough nutrients.

Drying out the tips is a signal that your aloe needs to be transplanted. Repotting into a new pot can solve this problem.

8. Do you water aloe vera from the top or bottom?

When watering an aloe vera plant, always water it from the bottom. Aloe vera plants don’t need to be watered very often, but when it’s time to do so, the job must be done right.

This means pouring the water slowly until it starts to come out of the drainage holes under the pot.

9. Should I cut the brown tips off my aloe plant?

If the tips of your Aloe Vera plant are turning brown, you can cut them off without harming your plant.

And if dehydration is the cause, it won’t hurt to leave the brown tips on your plant. If a fungal infection is a problem, you should remove them.

10. Why is my aloe plant not plump?

Sparse, thin, brittle leaves may indicate that the plant is not getting enough water. Using compacted soil is the main reason why the roots cannot absorb moisture.

Therefore, always use a well-drained soil mixture to grow aloe and other succulents to obtain healthy specimens.

11. Can Brown aloe turn green again?

Remove the plant from exposure to direct sunlight. Move the plant indoors. Gradually, it will return to its usual green hue.

Water the aloe vera once every twenty days to avoid overwatering and the aloe vera plant turning brown again.

12. Where should I put the aloe vera plant in my house?

Place aloe vera plants near a sunny window where they receive plenty of indirect light, such as a few feet from the south or west-facing window.

Too much direct sunlight can cause the aloe’s leaves to turn brown. Turn the pot once or twice a week so that all sides of the aloe receive equal light.

13. Should I cut off bent aloe leaves?

The only solution is to prevent aloe vera plants from bending. Unfortunately, once it’s bent, you can’t fix it.

It’s best to cut them off and use them. So you realize that proper care will save your aloe vera leaves from bending and also from other problems.

14. How long do aloe plants live?

With proper care, indoor aloe plants can live up to 12 years, give or take. The larger outdoor varieties are known to live well over two decades.

15. Are coffee grounds good for aloe vera plants?

No, Aloe vera plants do not like coffee grounds. Aloe vera plants tolerate slightly acidic to slightly alkaline soils but seem to do best in neutral to slightly alkaline soils.

Coffee grounds have a high nutrient density, and the acidic (low) pH means they are more easily absorbed by the aloe.

16. How long can aloe vera survive without water?

They can go without water for about 2 weeks before showing symptoms. Other succulents such as cacti will not be affected by a few weeks of drought and may not show any symptoms of underwatering.

17. How do I make my aloe plant thicker?

You can make your aloe vera leaves grow thicker by giving your plant lighter, giving it water as soon as the top one or two inches of soil becomes dry, and growing it in an appropriately sized pot.

Useful Links:

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