Aloe verecunda

Botanical name

Aloe verecunda

Other names

 

Family

Asphodelaceae

Dimensions

A small, erect grass aloe, often deciduous, growing to 30cm, solitary or in groups

Description of stem

Lowest (outer) parts of the leaves show characteristic white spots; winter grass fires or the cold leaves just the short stem visible, until the new leaves sprout annually in spring

Description of leaves

Narrow blue-green leaves arranged in two ranks or narrowly fan-shaped, sometimes developing into a circular rosette arrangement in older plants; the leaves covered with many raised, wartlike white spots on the outer surface near the base; small soft teeth on the edges (only); dying back in harsher winter weather

Description of flowers

Capitate, single racemes appear in summer, deep pink to red flowers, pendulous upon opening, perianth green at the mouth

Desciption of seed/fruit

 

Description of roots

Thick fleshy roots where water is stored in winter when it is normally leafless

Variation

A greenish flower form exists in the Limpopo Province

Propagation and cultivation

Grown from seed, do well in sunny rockery environments with well-drained soil; unlike many other grass aloes, A. verecunda thrives in full sun; transplanting is harmful to the root system that takes a long time to recover

Tolerances

 

Uses

Garden plant, advertised on the international market

Ecological rarity

Not common anymore in the natural habitat, becoming threatened through habitat destruction and degradation?

Pests and diseases

 

Other

CITES (and local provincial) restrictions on removal, transplanting and even seed collection of SA grass aloes without authorisation (See www.gisa.co.za); A. verecunda can be seen on the Melville Koppies

Location

Rocky outcrops and mountainous slopes, in grassland

Distribution (SA provinces)

Gauteng, Mpumalanga, Limpopo

Country

South Africa

Category: Aloes

Botanical Gardens