Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Aloe
Aloe barberae x dichotoma 'Hercules'

Family: Aloaceae
Genus: Aloe (AL-oh) (Info)
Species: barberae x dichotoma
Cultivar: Hercules

7 members have or want this plant for trade.

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Cactus and Succulents

12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)
15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)
20-30 ft. (6-9 m)
30-40 ft. (9-12 m)

12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)
15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)
20-30 ft. (6-9 m)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun


Bloom Color:
Bright Yellow

Bloom Time:
Late Fall/Early Winter
Mid Winter


Other details:
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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By RWhiz
Thumbnail #1 of Aloe barberae x dichotoma by RWhiz

By palmbob
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By palmbob
Thumbnail #3 of Aloe barberae x dichotoma by palmbob

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Thumbnail #7 of Aloe barberae x dichotoma by palmbob

There are a total of 33 photos.
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4 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive poeciliopsis On Jan 21, 2015, poeciliopsis from Phoenix, AZ wrote:

Central Phoenix -- My Hercules is in a ceramic pot and was planted in March 2012, over doubling its height since then. It is in deciduous tree shade and receives water from flood irrigation that inundates about the lower inch or two of the pot bi-weekly March-Oct. I give it additional water every couple months. It is lightly covered in winter and has survived as low as 24 F with only minor tip damage.

Positive mcvansoest On May 3, 2011, mcvansoest from Mesa, AZ (Zone 9b) wrote:

Planted a 3 ft specimen in my front yard in Mesa, AZ in the spring of 2010. Since then it has grown about a foot and half.
During the summer of 2010 it lost its partial shade when one of the Palo Verdes blew over during a storm, which caused some sun burn on some of the leafs, but it appeared to deal just fine after that initial adjustment period.
This winter we had three significant, but short periods of night frost, one of the periods it got into the low 20s. The plant is so big already that covering it was only partially successful, especially since it was extremely windy that night, but it survived just fine. Some of the leaf tips got some frost damage, during the low 20s night, but for the rest mid to high twenties did not seem to bother it at all.
I will have to see how it deals with a full summer of full sun, and I am making some plans for a shade structure just in case, but all in all this plant has really lived up to my expectations.

Positive BayAreaTropics On Jan 21, 2008, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:

Positive palmbob On Jan 21, 2008, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

positive hybrid of two branching South African tree aloes with excellent hybrid vigor- massive tree with thick trunk. Habit is a bit more like Aloe barberae with branching not necessarily dichotomous, and branches far longer than in Aloe dichotoma.. but have the thickness of Aloe dichotoma and some of the attractive peeling look. Leaves don't really look like either parent, being the dark green of Aloe barberae, but flat to slightly cupped in the centers and distinctly triangular. Consistency is half way between- firm, but not as firm as Aloe dichotoma. Cold hardiness is supposed to exceed both parents, but I will update on that 'reality' later. Easily grown from cuttings, as is its parent, Aloe barberae, but unlike the other parent, Aloe dichotoma. Flowers are very similar to Aloe barberae (orange) but a different cultivar is also in cultivation with Aloe dichotoma-like flowers (deep yellow). I have not personally seen any of these plants flower, even those that are obviously of mature size. I would call this a reluctant flowerer, or perhaps they just need to be in the ground a lot longer before they are stimulated to make flowers.

There has been some controversy about what Aloe Hercules is, particularly as there are multiple Aloe barberae-like trees in cultivation. Aloe Hercules and Aloe Medusa (now identified finally as Aloe tsongaensis) are very different looking plants. The former is a massive plant, even beefier that Aloe barberae while Aloe Medusa is a wispier, thinner plant with long, relatively skinny very upright branches (and many more of them than one sees in either this or Aloe barberae). Leaves are the most striking difference, with Aloe Hercules leaves being wide, triangular with sharp, whitish prominent teeth and are on inflexible dark blue-green leaves in consistency and color, while those of Aloe Medusa are much thinner, paler and a rubbery consistency, easily bent and almost devoid of marginal teeth. Additionally, this is a known hybrid while Aloe Medusa may be a real species found in nature. And this species is quite rare (and therefore expensive) in cultivation, while Aloe Medusa is quite common, often sold incorrectly as Aloe barberae.

And these Aloes should not be confused with another popular but rare hybrid called Aloe Goliath, a hybrid between Aloe barberae and Aloe vaombe.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Gilbert, Arizona
Mesa, Arizona
Phoenix, Arizona (2 reports)
Glen Avon, California
Long Beach, California
Norwalk, California
Reseda, California
San Diego, California

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