I love friends with big honking plants who love to give pieces - came back from a friend's place recently with TEN new plants, including 2 wonderfully gorgeous acanthocereus and a bunch of a. vera w/ pups! Woohoo! Score! My cacti collection is growing, and I LOVE IT! Is there really anything better in the world than a cactus? I sometimes wonder... Maybe only friends who share your love for cacti ...
No, there isn't anything better in the world, but if there were, it would be a blooming Aloe conifera, its yellow blossoms dangling in the air, its deep purplish-blue leaves lapping up the sun.
Good for you - I know the feeling well, and happy to see other people get it, too. A bit of unasked for advice - if you want your A. vera to flower next year (seems to happen out here in February/March/April), underpot it.
I would NOT follow the regimen you specified above, as it invites rot. It's my belief (unsupported by scientific fact, but neither is the Easter Bunny, and I believe in it)
the underpotting will force both flowering and pups. Overpotting is in invitation to the dreaded root rot.
ROOTROT = bad Healthy,yellow,vigorous aloe roots=good
As Jewel Orchid wrote, as long as they have good drainage, rain is good for them. There of course is a proviso to this. They do like to dry out between waterings, so too much rain wouldn't be good for most cacti (that's my preference - others use 'cactuses', which grates on my tin ear). Additionally, cacti don't like to be cold AND wet, so that's something else you might wish to be aware of.
Meanwhile on the Northern end of California where our winters are WET and frequent frosts...My cactus stayed out in poor rocky soil (great drainage) and flowered as soon as the first spring sun came out...Seems it didn't care that I was ignorant to it's needs!
overpotting = ROOT ROT? For the love of all that's good and holy, NO! I was sure that my misconception was what had come out of the conversation between you and some other guy. Hmmm... you'd think by now I'd be able to read.
As far as the Easter Bunny goes, any body or thing that brings me chocolate unsolicited is free to exist in my book.
Yep, Root Rot came to be when I was but a succulent tyko - I thought a plant would grow better/faster when given lots of room to grow - as in many things in life, that's true, but there are exceptions. If you have a potted succulent, you know they like to dry out between waterings. A root ball on an aloe, even one planted in a terra cotta pot (as most of mine are) needs to dry out between waterings. If it's overpotted, the chance of it drying out between waterings is minimal. When I repot an aloe, it's given several inches of room to grow in, but not much more. Anything more is a recipe for disaster. Aloes are easily started again if they've lost their roots, but why go through the bother?
I would be concerned if it didn't get above 60 F for 5-7 days and your plants are still wet. Otherwise, I wouldn't worry. The proof is your plants. We can give advice until the soapbox collapses from the weight of our collected words, but the plants seem happy, so there you have it. Do you have a C&S society in your neck of the woods, or do you know folks who grow what you do? Ask them about their experiences - that's the best advice I can think of.