Category: Small to Medium Clumping Aloes
USDA Hardiness Zones: 9b - 11
OverviewAloe hildebrandtii is an ordinary looking, low-growing, shrubby aloe from Somalia, where it tends to sprawl all over the place on stalks up to 3' long and forms large clumps.
DescriptionAloe hildebrandtii is a branching shrubby plant with many 2-4 feet long stems composed of individual rosettes, each about one foot in diameter. This aloe has a looser growth habit than many upright aloes. This Aloe is similar to Aloe arborescens in form but not as upright in habit. The leaves are light green and speckled with white spots, and the margins are lined with small, triangular shaped, brownish teeth. Very drought tolerant.
FloweringAloe hildebrandtii makes interesting branched conical yellow flowers tipped with a bit of green in the spring, summer and into fall. Mature plants have been seen in flower nearly every month of the year in California. The multicolored inflorescence is short and sparse.
Origin / HistoryAloe hildebrandtii is from Somalia and Ethiopia. The precise origin of this Somalian species was shrouded in mystery for nearly a century. Aloe authority G. W. Reynolds surmised that it was found in the mountains of northern Somalia based on Dr. Hildebrandt’s general account of his African Travels of 1873 and 1874. Subsequently, it was found to be fairly widely distributed in those mountains where it varies in flower color from yellow to pastel orange or even dull scarlet.
Care / CultivationEasy to grow plant and seedlings grow to flowering plants in just a 3 to 4 years.
Frost TendernessReported as having withstood a number of California frosts to the mid-20s. Aloe hildebrandtii seems fairly cold hardy down to around 26F - lower temperatures result in severe damage or death.
Use in the GardenNice in cactus, succulent and rock gardens and trailing over the tops of walls. Could be used mixed with other succulents in a hanging basket. Good with contrasting dark foliage plants or even as a loose taller ground cover.
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