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White crystals on Aloe Vera plant; what is this ?


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Mark
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:11 pm    Post subject: White crystals on Aloe Vera plant; what is this ? Reply with quote

My aloe vera plan has some strange white crystals on its leaves. When I whipe them off, the reurn after a few days. What are they? Question Question Question Question



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Pljoska
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:23 am    Post subject: Re: White crystals on Aloe Vera plant; what is this ? Reply with quote

What is an Aloe Vera Plant?

Aloe Vera plants are semi-tropical succulent perennials that are often mistaken for cacti, but are actually members of the lily family. The plant originated in Northern Africa. Today, the Aloe plant can be found growing in the most southern states such as Texas and Arizona. The Aloe plant is also known by the common names of “burn plant” and “Lilly of the desert,” among others.

Aloe plants have the physical characteristics of very thick, tapered, spiny or serrated leaves. It can be found in many sizes, including miniature varieties (one inch!) and larger ones where the individual leaves extend up to 4 feet. When used topically, it is the inside of the aloe leaves, or the sap, that is used in ointment and salves.
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Pljoska
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:24 am    Post subject: Re: White crystals on Aloe Vera plant; what is this ? Reply with quote

Growing Conditions for Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera plants are semi-tropical plants and can only be planted outside in areas of the country where there is no threat of frost, or in USDA zones 10-11. If you live in an area in this zone, place your Aloe Vera plant in full sun or light shade. It will need to be placed in soil that drains well. If you live in a cooler area, you can still place your Aloe Vera plant outside during the warm summer months. It will need full sun and semi-frequent watering. You can let the soil dry out completely between watering.
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Pljoska
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:24 am    Post subject: Re: White crystals on Aloe Vera plant; what is this ? Reply with quote

Caring for Aloe Plants

Aloe Vera plants are easy to care for: they need lots of sun, warmth and a minimal amount of watering.
•Place your plant in a sunny, consistently warm location away from drafts.
•Do not over-water your plant. Give it a good watering every couple of weeks. Let the soil dry out completely before watering again. Overwatering is probably the number one reason people are not successful growing Aloe Vera plants. Using soil that drains quickly (sandy, gritty soil) will help ensure your plant does not sit in overly moist conditions.
•Look closely at stems and leaves for any signs of insects or disease.
•Finally, look at the pot and soil. If roots are growing through the drainage holes or are seen at the soil surface, the plant has probably outgrown its pot. If you choose this plant, special care will be needed when transplanting into a larger pot.
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Pljoska
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:25 am    Post subject: Re: White crystals on Aloe Vera plant; what is this ? Reply with quote

Other considerations for Aloe Plants
•Aloe Vera plants can be toxic if ingested by small animals. If you have a cat or dog be cautious and aware of plant placement.
•When you bring your plant home from the garden center keep it away from other houseplants for a couple of weeks until you are sure it does not have any diseases or pest infestations.
•Fertilize your plant on a yearly basis, in the spring, with a 10-40-10 fertilizer.
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Pljoska
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:25 am    Post subject: Re: White crystals on Aloe Vera plant; what is this ? Reply with quote

Using Aloe

One of the benefits of growing Aloe Vera plants is that you have immediate access to its wonderful soothing benefits. If you receive a mild burn or abrasion simply break off a plump outer leaf from the plant, cut it lengthwise and scoop out the contents inside. You can crush the contents of the leaf and apply this “paste” to your burn or abrasion for relief.
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DuncanSmith
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 6:15 am    Post subject: Re: White crystals on Aloe Vera plant; what is this ? Reply with quote

Hi Mark, I think you may have an insect problem here not crystals. They appear to me to be mealybugs. There is a white fluffy covering over, probably, a female which is laying either live young or eggs onto the surface of the leaves. You may find that there are more of these deep down in the centre of the plant, which are hard to spot, from which they have come or even underneath the pot or around the rim of the pot. They can even get into the roots of the plant and hide.
You can get rid of them by spraying dimethoate which is a systemic insecticide that gets inside the plant and is taken up by the insect when it sucks on the plants sap. Malathion is another one you could try which is a contact insecticide and acts when it actually hits the insect itself, so good coverage with these is important. Pyrethrin based products are also good at controlling these. Some people have foiund success use methylated spirits by either dabbing it on the insect or spraying onto the leaves with a solution of 1 to 3 with water. Be careful with this last method!
Due to the fluffy coating of these pests you may need to add a wetter to help the sprays do its work better.
You may also find that you have to keep reapplying these sprays for a few weeks or so until you get on top of them as they are very hard to kill. It might be useful therefore to use different chemical groups each time you spray so as the mealybugs that are left don't get resistant to the spray.
Hope this helps? Regards Duncan
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