Since their Australian launch in 2008, Aloe-Aloe Horticulture’s flowering cultivars have been in the horticultural spotlight. The magnitude of flowering that occurs in their aloes is one that has not previously been seen in aloe species.
In some instances, cheaper seed-grown, pure aloe species are unsuccessfully being used to try and achieve the same outcome. While these species are capable of being used as fleshy leafed ‘succulents’, or for their claimed ‘Aloe Vera-like’ therapeutic medicinal properties, most are poor flowerers, with blooms that are short lived and insignificant.
Wild or species roses with insignificant flowers – some bloom only for a few days - are no longer grown because for over 2000 years rose breeders have created improved hybrids that bear little resemblance to their ancestors. In the same way, over the past 40 years in South Africa the hybridising of aloes has been taken to a whole new level, resulting in a new generation of Aloe-Aloe super-bloomers. These hybrids are proving to be dramatic improvements on their ancestors, making them obsolete in the same way that flowering wild roses are now obsolete.
These new Aloe-Aloe hybrids are unable to be grown from seed. The only way to obtain identical plants is through vegetative propagation. They are increasingly being specified by landscape architects and used as robust flowering perennials, able to thrive on their own in our harsh climate with very little care in hot, cold, dry and wet conditions.
Aloe-Aloe’s cultivars are all about the flowers. There are now 34 unique plants available from numerous independent growers and distributors across Australia - but look out for the exciting new Echidna™ (Aloe hybrid ‘LEO 3562A’) available next month. Beautiful pastel red to cream bi-coloured flowers adorn Echidna ™, a grey-green stemless ball shaped plant with pointed leaves covered in prominent but soft and safe, white, warty spines.
For more information on the Aloe-Aloe range or to find your nearest stockist visit www.aloe-aloe.com.au
Images (top to bottom): Super Red™ & Capricorn™; Big Red™ & Always Red; Tusker™; Sparkler™; Echidna™.