Aloe is one of the most resilient, widely available houseplants on the market. They can forgive even the most hectic of months for busy plant parents. Almost impossible to neglect into plant death. A treat for active adults and plant-owning novices alike, this former outdoor exclusive turned houseplant essential is a wonder for all. I can’t think of a house I visited in my childhood that didn’t have a perfectly massive aloe plant often in a container it had long since outgrown.
A part of the Asphodelaceae family, Aloe Vera has a great many “siblings” under this umbrella. Some exhibit proportionally fatter fronds (that’s just a fancy name for Aloe’s leaves), while other sport prickled edges not unlike a serrated knife. If left to grow wild, your Aloe Vera can grow to be taller than grown men topping out around seven feet tall in the right conditions.
For commercial use, Aloe can be found in beauty products from facemasks to body lotions. Revered for its deep hydrating potential and cooling sensation, this makes the plant an especially popular ingredient for topical inflammation relief and redness. Just so, there are a ton of uses for Aloe in your everyday life, assuming of course you aren’t allergic or ingesting it.
As a pale kid who grew up with friends paler than themselves, we were especially well-acquainted with sunburns. Most popularly used for sunburn relief gels, my friends’ parents would have an aloe stick prepped or two harvested from their living room plant frozen to give extra relief to quickly reddening children after long days in the sun. Peeled of the outer green skin, it’s an ice pop for your arms that goes especially well with an evening movie.
In my college years, I had a roommate use aloe in the name of hair care. She would cut open an Aloe leaf, scoop the goo into a university emblazoned shot glass, and add a few doses worth of conditioner. Not only did it help her pricy haircare last longer, but her locks were super shiny.
These days, I’m using Aloe a bit differently. I spend heaps of time in my kitchen trying to work through my latest recipe find. The more I read them, the more I wish I was as smooth as Stanley Tucci’s writing. In reality though, I’m bad at my timing. I’ll start my mains and have my water boiling at the wrong moment. And in a panic, I’ll grab the wrong edge earning yet another inconvenient culinary burn. And while that may only be every 6 weeks or so, these things have started to add up. Now I just keep a couple aloe stalks in my freezer. I’ll cut a slice less than a half inch and gauze the piece to the affected edge.
I’ll never suggest ingesting this houseplant, but you might want to give it a kiss goodnight for all of the good this plant can do. Made of mostly water, Aloe is a basic boy. And there’s nothing wrong with the basics.
Change to be more positive…Aloe is resilient and forgiving for even the busiest of plant parents.
The Modern Sprout Team
Words by: Sydney Gutierrez