While traditionally easy to grow and care for, Aloe Vera does have certain common plant problems that novice gardeners should watch out for. Also referred to by its botanical name of Aloe barbadensis, Aloe Vera can be grown successfully indoors or outdoors as long as temperatures don't drop to freezing, and there is adequate exposure to sunlight. As a succulent that is comprised mainly of water, Aloe Vera is sensitive to temperature extremes and can die if exposed to extreme cold. Conversely, Aloe Vera can grow well in direct sunlight as long as adequate watering is maintained.
Aloe Vera is often propagated from an existing plant through removing small shoots called "pups" that grow up beside the original plant. These shoots can be repotted in any commercially available potting soil and nurtured into a mature plant. Aloe Vera care is simple. The Aloe Vera will require frequent watering but soil should be allowed to dry out in between watering.
The most common Aloe Vera problems include improper hydration, lack of soil drainage, exposure to cold, and improper access to light. An Aloe plant will signal an inappropriate environment with yellowed, drooping or discolored leaves. In addition, the Aloe Vera plant is subject to a range of pests and diseases that are common to succulents, including cacti. The most invasive Aloe Vera pest is the aloe mite, which is hard to spot and is carried by wind or contact. The aloe scale is another common pest that can produce mold on Aloe leaves. Aloe rust is a fungal disease that manifests in dark patches on Aloe leaves. Pests and diseases must be treated with appropriate pesticide.