Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Flat-flowered Aloe
Aloe marlothii

Family: Aloaceae
Genus: Aloe (AL-oh) (Info)
Species: marlothii (mar-LOTH-ee-eye) (Info)

Synonym:Aloe marlothii var. marlothii

2 vendors have this plant for sale.

10 members have or want this plant for trade.

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Alpines and Rock Gardens
Cactus and Succulents

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
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
Sun to Partial Shade
Light Shade

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested
Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:
Gold (Yellow-Orange)

Bloom Time:
Mid Winter


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
This plant is resistant to deer

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse
From seed; sow indoors before last frost
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed

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7 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

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

Central Phoenix -- My Aloe marlothii is about 15 years old, having replaced one that was killed by the power company while trimming the nearby pecan tree. It grew slowly until 2011, when it suffered quite a bit of damage in a late (early February) hard freeze, despite being under a cold frame. This seemed to stimulate it and it has grown much faster since. It is in partial shade and has moderate water. It is almost 5 feet tall, but has not bloomed.

Positive baiissatva On Sep 8, 2008, baiissatva from Dunedin
New Zealand wrote:

Mighty, hardy, undemanding, always impressive. Mine are just about to start trunking but they grow very well down here in New Zealand and we have some massive specimens. Like most aloes, they grow faster with a little attention to water and feeding, and half-decent soil.

Very frost hardy for a succulent plant, and another thing I love about it is its ability to resist hail damage, which can pock mark and scar some softer-leaved aloes (we get quite a bit of hail in winter.) Looking forward to the wonderful flowers.

See some of our plants and gardenalia at The Blackthorn

Positive BayAreaTropics On Feb 27, 2007, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:

Here in the bay area they do very good, if a little slow growing. As they get a few feet of trunk and bloom, marlothii's are stand out plants not confused with any other plant around here. Pretty cold tolerant.Mine withstood the freeze of 07 pretty much unscathed. The flowers on the other hand were freeze dried..good thing it had already been blooming a couple of weeks before the freeze. It also makes a great defender for your yard-the spines and chunky leaves discourage trespassers.

Positive RWhiz On Sep 10, 2005, RWhiz from Spring Valley, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

This plant is a single-trunked tree Aloe that can eventually get to 20 feet with age. The leaves are large, heavy, and very spiney along the ridges and outside of the leaves.

It is a very easy to grow Aloe. Minimum maintenance except if one wants to remove the old, dried leaves along the stem. Looks better with the dried leaves along the stem in my opinion--giving it the appearance of a Palm skirt.

Positive palmbob On Jul 14, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is one of the more impressive Aloes to be grown in the xeriscape gardens of the southwest. It is NOT a user-friendly species as its heavy leaves can be completely covered with incredibly sturdy, sharp black spines (some forms have almost no spines, though). Having transplanted several, they are painfully heavy plants and usually leave one's back sore as well as bleeding from every location you touch them. There has to be a lot of hybridizing in this species as I have seen 3 distinct and completely different flower types identified in botanical gardens as this species... anyone know what the true A marlothii flower looks like? turns out there are a huge variety out there...

the KwaZulu form of this plant has nearly upright yellow flowers with a touch of red and/or orange in them and was called Aloe spectabilis until recently combined with A marlothii. This form looks similar to the KwaZulu form of A ferox, called Aloe candelabrum, but the flowers on that plant are completely upright, and usually more orange to red.

Positive lynxx On May 26, 2003, lynxx wrote:

There are white and coral flowered forms of the species too. All Aloe species hybridize easily, garden seed is unreliable if more than one species are being grown.

Neutral Weezingreens On Jan 20, 2003, Weezingreens from Seward, AK (Zone 3b) wrote:

Flat-flowered Aloe is native to South Africa where it grows on rocky slopes at at medium altitude. The gray-green leaves of this succulent are spined and quite thick. They are generally single stemmed from which bright blooms appear mid-winter when they are a welcome sight on dull days. The frequent dead leaves of this plant can give it an untidy appearance.

Positive bill_zone6 On Jan 20, 2003, bill_zone6 wrote:

Orgin: Botswana; Transvaal; Natal


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

Apache Junction, Arizona
Carefree, Arizona
Gilbert, Arizona
Mesa, Arizona (2 reports)
Phoenix, Arizona (2 reports)
Tucson, Arizona
Bostonia, California
Calistoga, California
Casa De Oro-mount Helix, California
El Macero, California
Fresno, California
Hayward, California
Long Beach, California
Los Angeles, California
Mission Viejo, California
Reseda, California
San Leandro, California
Sebastopol, California
Simi Valley, California
Spring Valley, California
Thousand Oaks, California
Upland, California
Visalia, California
Vista, California
Orlando, Florida
Metairie, Louisiana

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