Aloe vera plants are easy to grow indoors and can also be grown outdoors, although they are not frost tolerant. Aloes enjoy sandy soil that is well drained. Container-grown plants should be potted up in a grow medium to which sharp sand is added for easy drainage. The plants also prefer to be dry in between waterings.
Watering an aloe is an easy job. They don't require much. Container size and the growing medium make a difference as to how much water is needed. Where aloe vera plants are concerned, it is always better to err on the side of less water than more.
Time Between Waterings
Aloes are succulents that store water in their fleshy leaves. They can survive in dry conditions for a long time and actually thrive. Wait until the soil is completely dry before giving the plant a good drink. Depending on the health of the plant, some aloes can live for months without watering. Watering twice a month, however, should be enough as long as there is sufficient humidity in the environment.
Overwatering is the main problem associated with growing aloe vera plants. Overwatering can cause the succulent leaves to become soft and slightly mushy and the color of the leaves may start to look dull. The solution is simple: allow the plant to dry out.
Aloe leaves can also turn reddish or brown. This could be attributed to a number of problems such as stress, changes in the plant's environment or too much water. Ensuring that the plant is situated in partial sun and allowing the soil to dry out will alleviate the stress on the plant and change the leaf color back to green.
Aloe roots are short and remain close to the surface. The best way to know whether it is time to water the plant is to stick a finger into the soil. Moist soil is dark and will cling to skin. Dry soil will brush off. When the soil feels dry to the touch, it is time to water.
Aloe vera plants reproduce easily, giving off little plantlets that can be potted up to produce new plants. Again, take care not to overwater them. Too much water will kill the new, little roots.