It is easy to care for an aloe vera plant, but how should you water the Aloe vera from the Top or from the Bottom?
Always water the Aloe vera from the bottom. This helps water to reach down the roots easily.
Why Aloe Vera needs to be Watered from Bottom?
It is not just Aloe Vera, watering for most plants needs to be done from the bottom.
Watering from the bottom helps to keep the water concentrated at the roots else water will fall and splash from the leaves to a larger area.
By watering at the bottom, you keep yourself concentrated at the roots. Aloe Vera just needs wet damp soil.
How often should you water Aloe Vera?
Aloe Vera doesn’t require frequent watering as they can naturally grow in desert conditions.
Aloe vera, if planted in a garden, doesn’t require much watering as they receive enough water from natural rainfall.
Only if the soil is completely dry and leaves start to shrink, does it require additional watering.
Aloe vera, if planted in a pot, does require a bit of additional watering. You might need to water Aloe vera every second or third week based on the moisture level of the soil before watering.
You can choose to do a finger dip test by pushing your finger down in the soil by about two inches or using a Hygrometer.
If the soil is turning dry, you would need to water it before the leaves start to shrink or curl. But, If the soil is moist, do not water your Aloe vera as it can lead to over-watering.
Check out How Long Do Azaleas Live? Factors Influencing Longevity
How should you water Aloe vera?
The right way to water Aloe vera would be slow and steady while pouring the water at the bottom.
Aloe vera requires infrequent but deep watering. This is because they are part of the succulent family and store water for the long term.
This means you should rarely water Aloe vera but when you do, you should water it deeply until the water starts to drip out of the drainage holes at the bottom.
Issue of Overwatering Aloe vera and how to solve
When growing an aloe vera, often people overwater it instead of under watering it as it is a bit drought resistant.
Signs of Overwatering Aloe vera include
- Darkening of leaves to brown color.
- Mushy base and roots of the plant.
It is possible most of the time to revive the plant if it has just started to happen.
To resolve the problem, you would need to follow the below steps:
- If you have just noticed the leaves darkening to brown color, stop watering the plant and let it dry.
- If it doesn’t help, dig up the plant and allow the roots to dry and heal for two or three days.
- Trim the rotted part of the roots.
- Plant the Aloe again into fresh, dry soil.
- Start watering your Aloe for a week. It should start to show signs of new growth.
Where Should You Plant Aloe vera?
Here are a few factors that you should look for while planting Aloe vera
Aloe Vera doesn’t need much care but it does require a location that can provide bright, indirect sunlight (or, artificial sunlight). It is best to keep potted Aloe in the south or west window.
Aloe vera does not need long periods of direct sunlight as it can cause the yellowing of leaves which is a symptom of drying out of the plant. This may mean more frequent watering.
I would recommend a terra-cotta pot as it is porous and will allow the soil to dry sooner and help you avoid the risk of root rotting.
You can use a plastic container with more drainage holes at the bottom. Still, it will keep the moisture for long.
It is also recommended that you have a container that accommodates your Aloe vera well. The pot should be as wide as it is deep.
Aloe vera is the native of the Sandy soil so you can use sandy soil and keep the pH neutral.
If you want to use a potting mix we would recommend one made for succulents and cacti. Here is the recommended one.
You should not use the normal gardening soil for Aloe.
If you want to make your own potting mix, you should use a mix of Pumice, Perlite, Lava rocks, Peat moss, etc.
Most succulents such as aloe vera are quite sensitive to the minerals and chemicals in the soil, so you would need to make sure that you do not use mineral-rich water.
One of the things that you should consider doing for aloe vera plants is using either distilled water or rainwater.
You can use regular water for a while, but the chlorine and fluoride in tap water can cause issues over a period of time.
You should consider using either distilled water or rainwater for the ideal growth of Aloe vera.
Aloe vera is a drought-resistant plant that needs watering only when the soil is dry. Typically you should water Aloe every two to three weeks if it is planted in a pot. It may not need additional watering if planted in a garden.
Always water the Aloe from the bottom as it helps to reach water to the roots easily. Watering from the top would splash the water on the leaves and elsewhere.