The aloe vera plant is a succulent plant variety that is known worldwide for the soothing and healing properties of the water gel found within the leaves. For this reason, they are popularly kept as indoor houseplants, but they also grow well outdoors in tropical, subtropical, and desert-like conditions. Depending on where you live, the care instructions for aloe versa can either be quite simple or a little tricky, especially the watering schedule.
Aloe vera plants should be watered once every 3 weeks, allowing the soil to dry out completely between each watering. During the winter months, aloe veras become dormant and can be watered once a month or less depending on how well watered it was during the growing season.
Although there are many different species of the aloe vera plant, their care instructions remain fairly consistent as they are all part of the succulent family.
Table of Contents
- How to Tell if an Aloe Vera Needs Water?
- How Do You Know When Your Aloe Vera is Sufficiently Watered?
- Can You Overwater an Aloe Vera?
- What are Signs of an Overwatered Aloe Vera?
- How Long Can an Aloe Vera Go Without Water?
- Should Aloe Vera Soil Be Moist?
- Why is my Aloe Vera Turning Brown/Yellow?
- Why is my Aloe Vera Droopy?
- Does an Aloe Vera Need Fertilizer?
- How Much Sunlight Does an Aloe Vera Need?
- Will Temperatures and Humidity Affect an Aloe Vera?
- Will Aloe Veras Survive in the Winter?
- Will Aloe Veras Survive in Direct Sunlight?
- Final Thoughts
How to Tell if an Aloe Vera Needs Water?
It is less likely for an aloe vera to be dehydrated than overwatered but there are some signs to look for that indicate it is time to water your aloe vera. You should check the top few inches of soil and if it is dry to touch, you can comfortably water it ensuring that it is in a pot with drainage holes to drain away any excess water.
If your aloe vera has become dehydrated, the leaves will become thin and puckered, unable to hold themselves up as strongly as they do when sufficiently watered.
How Do You Know When Your Aloe Vera is Sufficiently Watered?
You will know that your aloe vera has been sufficiently watered when water starts to drip out of the drainage holes at the bottom of the pot. At this point, you can allow the soil to dry out before watering it again.
A sufficiently watered aloe vera will have vibrant green leaves that are plump and full of the healing watery gel that everyone knows it for. The leaves should be well structured and hold themselves upright without assistance.
Can You Overwater an Aloe Vera?
If an aloe vera is unwell, it is likely due to overwatering. While aloe vera’s tolerate sufficient watering, the soil should be allowed to dry out between each watering and watered even less if at all during the winter months.
Aloe vera plants will not do well if the soil is consistently moist and sits in poorly draining soil that holds water around the roots.
What are Signs of an Overwatered Aloe Vera?
Signs of an overwatered aloe vera include wilting leaves that become discolored and die off. Overwatering an aloe vera plant can lead to root rot which will deteriorate the entire plant.
How Long Can an Aloe Vera Go Without Water?
During the growing season, an aloe vera plant can last upwards of 3 weeks without water and in the dormant winter months, they can last 1 or 2 months without water. These succulent plants prefer warm dry conditions over humid and consistently damp conditions.
Should Aloe Vera Soil Be Moist?
The only time aloe vera soil should be moist is in the days following its last watering. Between each watering, the soil should be allowed to dry out completely. Keeping your aloe vera in consistently moist soil will lead to root rot, wilted and unhealthy leaves, and possibly fungal gnats.
It is safer to underwater an aloe vera from which it will usually recover than overwatering it.
Why is my Aloe Vera Turning Brown/Yellow?
Your aloe vera may show signs of yellowing or brown discoloration in the leaves for a few reasons. If an aloe vera is quite dehydrated, the leaves will pucker, turn brown, and start to die off.
The more likely case is that the aloe vera plant has been overwatered in which case it may be experiencing root rot which causes the leaves to wilt, turn yellow or brown, and die off as well.
Why is my Aloe Vera Droopy?
A healthy aloe vera plant should have vigorous, plump green leaves that hold themselves upright without assistance. The leaves of your aloe vera may become droopy if it has been dehydrated for too long in which case the leaves will start to pucker, wilt, and drop.
Droopy leaves are likely to occur when an aloe vera has been overwatered causing oversaturation of the soil, not only compromising the roots but the structure and appearance of the leaves as well.
Does an Aloe Vera Need Fertilizer?
Aloe vera plants are hardy and do not require overly rich or fertile soil to grow in. Outdoor aloe vera do not need fertilizer however, you may wish to feed your indoor aloe vera an all-purpose indoor plant fertilizer once a year in the spring before the growing season begins.
How Much Sunlight Does an Aloe Vera Need?
Aloe vera plants prefer to be in areas that receive bright indirect or partial sunlight throughout the day. The sunlight should be indirect or diffused with a sheer curtain to protect the skin of the leaves from scorching.
Will Temperatures and Humidity Affect an Aloe Vera?
Aloe vera plants do well in warm and dry air. They are fairly drought resistant and the soil should be allowed to dry completely between each watering. If you have an indoor aloe vera, there is no need to provide it with additional humidity however it should be given enough sunlight and warmth to thrive, especially during the winter months.
Will Aloe Veras Survive in the Winter?
Aloe vera’s are not meant to tolerate winter conditions and will survive only as indoor plants in areas with cold seasons. They should not be exposed to temperatures below 40 degrees Fahrenheit as this can stunt their growth or kill them off.
Will Aloe Veras Survive in Direct Sunlight?
While aloe vera’s are hardy plants, the outer layer of their leaves can be sun-sensitive and prone to scorching with too much direct exposure. You can place it in an area that receives morning sun but it should not be left in the hot afternoon sun.
Aloe vera plants prefer lots of bright indirect or diffused sunlight to thrive.
Aloe vera plants are not only infamous for the healing gel found within their leaves but also their dominating appearance. They are helpful plants to own and if you follow these care instructions, you will have a thriving aloe vera.
If interested, check out our guide on How Often You Should Water Mums here!
Janice is a retired High School teacher who is spending her leisure years keeping busy with all sorts of projects. Aside from freelance writing, she’s an enthusiastic amateur chef, home wine maker, and tends a large raised-bed vegetable garden, while at the same time running a Bed & Breakfast.