Landscaping with aloe hybrids

TEXT CONNALL OOSTERBROEK PHOTOGRAPHS CONNALL OOSTERBROEK AND SUPPLIED

These striking plants bring a welcome splash of colour to the garden. Here are some of the hybrids we love

Scarlet-chested sunbird on an Aloe marlothii.

Scarlet-chested sunbird on an Aloe marlothii.

Indigenous aloes and their many wonderful hybrids offer such a wonderful source of colour, shape and texture that it’s hardly surprising they’ve gained popularity over the last few years.

Autumn Haze

Autumn Haze

Landscaping with aloes

Aloes offer striking flowers, architectural form and inspiring stature and have the ability to withstand tough conditions. The diversity of species and the hybrids released each year, ensure there’s something for everyone.

Many are at home in pots on a sunny balcony or planted en masse in stark sunny areas. Most can be used as accents to draw the eye through the landscape. For nature lovers, they have the added benefit of attracting a diverse range of birds and other wildlife to the garden.

Sunrise

Sunrise

These are bred for longer flowering periods, striking flowers, rapid growth and disease resistance and are more at home in a garden setting than species aloes. Here are six of the best:

  • ‘Autumn Haze’ grows fast and is a lovely clump-forming aloe that flowers early, producing masses of orange-pink flowers from February to May.
  • ‘Peri-Peri’ has a compact form and a floriferous nature making it ideal for mass plantings, small gardens and containers. It’s particularly long flowering. Under the right conditions, it’ll flower from April through to June.
  • ‘Sunrise’ is a medium-sized aloe with bicoloured blooms in early winter, generally before the frosts arrive. It can be grown in full sun or semi-shade and seems to be immune to aloe cancer.
  • ‘Tiger Eye’ is popular as it produces distinctive orange blooms throughout the year. For best effect, plant at least three together. It has a high resistance to all aloe diseases.
Tiger Eye

Tiger Eye

  • ‘Orange Express’ is small in stature, but its flowers are anything but. Flowering from March to May, it’s ideal for mass planting and in containers.
Orange Express

Orange Express

  • ‘Koeleman’s Orange’ is the perfect specimen plant growing up to 1,5m high. From early July to August it offers a spectacular mass of orange blooms.
Koeleman’s Orange

Koeleman’s Orange

*For more information on aloes, visit SANBI plantzafrica.com and pza.sanbi.org
The Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens in Roodepoort have a wide variety of aloes.

 

Sources:

De Wet Aloes | The Aloe Farm thealoefarm.co.za

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