On Jan 1, 2010, nomosno from San Diego, CA (Zone 10b) wrote:
This is a beautiful plant but not suitable for a small home garden in my opinion. Maybe in a pot or in a large backyard where you have lots of space. It is a prolific grower, especially sideways, and overruns its environment very quickly. I have struggled with a patch of these beauties for years but eventually I had to give up and get rid of them. Which was not easy because these plants weigh a ton given that they have thick and large succulent leaves which are are full of water.
BTW "arborescens" does not mean "tree", it means "branching" i.e. "acting like a tree" (like in "idirescent" - behaving like a rainbow, or iris in Latin, also luminescent etc) so the term "tree aloe" is a wrong translation, not to mention that is simply a wrong description of this plant that looks not at all like a tree.
On Jul 21, 2009, lhstiles from Greenbrae, CA wrote:
Fast grower in Ross Valley area in Marin County. Appreciates a bit of light shade in the hottest areas, and some supplemental irrigation (once a week). Grows plantlets at the base of the stem when planted with roots. They are easy to propagate by cutting off plants from the main stem. Cuttings take a few months to root, and these like to have a bit of supplemental water if put in the ground in full sun. Some of my cuttings turned a bright orange when i just stuck them in the ground and didn't irrigate, but gradually seem to be turning greener after some irrigation was provided.
When grown in full sun without irrigation, they tend to take on a yellow color, but are a darker, greener color when irrigated. Beautiful orange/red flowers in the winter and early spring, hummingbirds love them.
On Jan 11, 2009, thistlesifter from Vista, CA wrote:
Our gardens grow four different clones of variegated arborescens. These all grow in full bright sun for at least all the hours between 9AM and 3PM year-round. I've never seen these stressed even in hot Santana 98degree F heat, which we see at least 5 days each year.
There are many landscape arborescens in the neighborhoods all around San Diego county and these grow 25 miles inland without difficulty. The only issue besides need to prune, is the proliferation of Aloe mite especially in the last 20 years.
Many non-succulent -lovers have the plant in their landscape and don't notice the Aloe Mite cancer that forms large galls on the plant and usually gets into the flower buds on some flower stems. These are difficult to control. At a miniumum the galls should be removed if you have many aloes.
We control Aloe Mite and patrol our gardens for aloe infected with aloe mite at least weekly.
On Sep 7, 2008, baiissatva from Dunedin New Zealand wrote:
Down here in the southern hemisphere (coastal Otago, NZ), we have the orange-flowered form that flowers toward the end of winter. It suffers in the worst frosts but will take most of them without damage, and grows so vigorously anyway that it doesnt really matter. Its easy to take this cheerful aloe for granted because its so common, but imagine life without it! Can be pruned to your requirements, kept low as a rambler or trained higher as good protection for more wimpy aloes. Our natives birds enjoy the flowers. Great for that crappy clay bank where nothing else wants to grow. Whip off a woody cutting, stick it in the ground and youve got another one.
On Dec 16, 2003, palmbob from Tarzana, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:
A prolific suckerer and brancher- you have to make lots of room for this plant, or like pruning Aloes.. seems to bloom most of the year here in So Cal. I have seen in bloom in the middle of the winter and the middle of the summer... not too many Aloes do that. Very common plant both in private gardens and public landscaping around Los Angeles. Often called the Octopus plant. From South Africa.
Though most plants have red flowers, there is a yellow-flowered form that isn't all that rare. It seems to flower just a bit earlier, and flowers don't last as long as red form. Yellow flowers only seen in winter.
This is also a very commonly used plant for making lots of aloe hybrids, since its such an aggressive grower.
There are also variegated forms of this plant but they seem much more slow growing and a bit less tolerant of sunlight.
This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:
Peoria, Arizona Amesti, California Bonsall, California Brea, California Clayton, California Fairfield, California Fremont, California Greenbrae, California La Presa, California Los Angeles, California Martinez, California Reseda, California Riverside, California San Diego, California (2 reports) San Francisco, California San Leandro, California Temecula, California Thousand Oaks, California Vista, California (2 reports) Bay Hill, Florida Jacksonville, Florida (3 reports) Orlando, Florida Kihei, Hawaii Lewiston, Maine Socorro, New Mexico West Linn, Oregon Frisco, Texas Vienna, Wisconsin