Imagine being able to pick fresh lemons, limes and oranges right from your patio! Read more »
Cutting overgrown grasses by more than an inch or two at a time can create unhealthy brown and bald spots in your lawn – or ev... Read more »
Kids are eager gardeners. They love to experiment with colorful flowers, have an adventurous sense of design, and getting dirt... Read more »
Our Shear Ease® Grass Shears include a patented mechanism that prevents the blades from jamming or sticking when you’re trimmin... Read more »
The first time you try our PowerGear® Hedge Shears, you’ll be amazed — but it’s not magic, it’s gears. Our patented gear techno... Read more »
Our Easy-Pour Watering Can offers both capacity and control. The 2.6-gallon volume holds a generous amount of water that is eas... Read more »
Put your crafting skills to work and create a beautiful and unique fascinator that reflects your personal style. Read more »
“Painting” with tissue paper is not only fun but beautiful! Read more »
Mosaic tile frames are a beautiful way to display photos. Read more »
Designed for long, easy cuts down strips of Duck® Tape, our Duck® Edition Scissors feature a non-stick blade coating that preve... Read more »
Add distinctive style to craft projects of all kinds with a Squeeze Punch that makes every embellishment up to 2X easier to pun... Read more »
Designed for tight, precise cuts through Duck® Tape, our Duck® Edition Detail Scissors feature a non-stick blade coating that p... Read more »
A colorful, roomy bag is just the thing you need to carry all your belongings for a day at the beach. Read more »
Keep the kids busy on a road trip with their own art bag full of inspiration and the essentials. Read more »
This easy pillowcase dress looks adorable with pretty fabrics. Plus, it is super simple to put together, even if you have not... Read more »
Only our Stitcher Scissors provide precision and control that meet the needs of the most demanding sewers and quilters. Micro-T... Read more »
Our Seamstress Scissors are the perfect all-purpose scissors for anyone who cuts fabric frequently. The smooth action of these... Read more »
Choose our Dressmaker Shears for long, smooth cuts through multiple layers of medium to heavy fabrics. Extra-long blades maximi... Read more »
Looking for a sure cure for bored kids - make sparkly sea creatures! Read more »
Open-ended activities like this Busy Book can keep kids occupied in the back seat of a car AND spark fun family conversations! Read more »
It doesn’t take much to turn an everyday snack into something a little extra special. It is great to see how quickly you can a... Read more »
Our Preschool Training Scissors features a special training lever that opens the blades after each cut, helping children learn... Read more »
Children love our Designer Non-stick Blunt-tip Kids Scissors for the colorful handle patterns that make cutting fun and the non... Read more »
Our Designer Non-stick Student Scissors are larger than our Kids Scissors but smaller than adult scissors, perfect for those ol... Read more »
The beautiful mood lighting of lanterns at outdoor gatherings is fabulous, so why not craft up a set to use this summer. Read more »
Treat your children to their own special tent hideaway, then stand back and watch as the fun and adventures begin! Read more »
Make a thoughtful gift for someone this summer! Read more »
The StaySharp™ Max Reel Mower combines patent-pending technology with superior ergonomics to deliver best-in-class cutting perf... Read more »
Great for beginners, the unique design of this tool makes cutting perfect shapes from fabric a breeze — since you’re not managi... Read more »
Perfect for a wide range of sewing and quilting tasks, our Amplify® RazorEdge™ Fabric Shears sense blade separation and force t... Read more »
Look no further than the humble aloe. There are about 180 species of aloe, but the most popular one is aloe vera (technically known as Aloe barbadensis), shown above.
Despite its appearance, this succulent is actually part of the lily family and is native to the Mediterranean and northern Africa.
Aloe is a first aid kit inside a plant! When I was younger we lived in Florida, and aloe vera grew rampantly in my parents’ garden. If we had an insect bite, scratch or sunburn, my mother would slice off a leaf, cut it inside and slather the clear juice onto our skin. The aloe provided instant relief, and had natural bactericidal properties. No wonder aloe’s medicinal qualities have been cherished since at least Ancient Greece.
When you cut the leaf, it will eventually grow a callus, as you can see on the right of this plant. It won’t grow back completely, however. If you don’t like the way this looks, prune the leaf back to the base. New leaves will grow from the center of the plant.
To grow aloe in your home, keep in mind these points:
- Aloe grows year-round in zones 9 to 11. If you live in a colder climate, however, move the plant to a sunny window indoors when temperatures drop in the fall.
- Aloe thrives in sun and partial sun in well-drained soil. Overwatering and poor drainage have killed many an aloe plant.
- Consider planting your aloe in a cactus/succulent potting mixture, so it has excellent drainage. Terra cotta pots are ideal, because they dry out quickly. You can then place the pot into a more decorative container, and take it out when you water so it drains properly. That’s what I often do.
- Allow the soil to dry completely before watering your aloe again.
- Aloe doesn’t mind being a bit being root bound in a container. If you repot your aloe, use a container that’s only slightly larger than the last pot.
You can also find more unusual aloes for sale at local nurseries and garden centers. In my nursery, I spotted rare aloes, such as ‘Green Warts’, which are worth growing as well.
Whichever aloe you decide to grow, give it plenty of sun and drainage. You’ll be rewarded with a medicinal plant that’s been famous for centuries and a pleasure to have in the garden.