Lpnj42
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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:47 pm

Indoor potted aloe problem (broken/rotting stem?)

Good evening! I have some problems/questions regarding a potted indoor aloe plant that was given to me about a year ago. The pot seems to be the right size and it seems to get enough sunlight without burning. I keep it on top of a low bookshelf in front of a window.
The problem: I think the stem is either broken or even rotting. I must have over watered it this last time. Most of the plant looks healthy, but the stem isn't strong enough to support the plant's weight anymore. There is also a baby aloe plant growing. Given that it's the start of fall, do I replant it now or wait until spring? I Don't want to risk the plant getting worse but Don't know if it's harmful to replant this time of year. Any tips would be great as I've never replanted an aloe or any succulent before. I have cleaned out the dead stuff already and broke off two dying leaves. The stem is dry, not mushy or slimy, and seems brittle. I leaned it the opposite way it had fallen so it doesn't crush the baby aloe.
PS - I hope I didn't attach too many pictures!
Thank you!
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baileysup
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Posts: 435
Joined: Fri Nov 12, 2010 11:04 am
Location: NE-PA(Zone 6a-5b)

Re: Indoor potted aloe problem (broken/rotting stem?)

I personally repot ANY time of the year IF an emergency. I've repotted in winter. All of my repots survived. If the stem is indeed rotted, cut above the rot, and let dry for a week. Then plant again. It will grow new roots. Just don't water too much. Dry soil grows roots, while wet soil can kill them. Be one with the aloe ;)

Lpnj42
Newly Registered
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:47 pm

Re: Indoor potted aloe problem (broken/rotting stem?)

I'm definitely going to repot soon rather than holding off and hoping for the best. I understand I should get clay pots as they help absorb excess water, and they should be on the shallow side. What about soil? Obviously I know it needs to drain well, and I'd rather buy pre-mixed than put together my own. I've seen a lot of reviews that some organic soils have bugs when opened, and that some big brands like Miracle Gro Don't actually drain well. What do you guys use?

baileysup
Green Thumb
Posts: 435
Joined: Fri Nov 12, 2010 11:04 am
Location: NE-PA(Zone 6a-5b)

Re: Indoor potted aloe problem (broken/rotting stem?)

Lpnj42 wrote:I'm definitely going to repot soon rather than holding off and hoping for the best. I understand I should get clay pots as they help absorb excess water, and they should be on the shallow side. What about soil? Obviously I know it needs to drain well, and I'd rather buy pre-mixed than put together my own. I've seen a lot of reviews that some organic soils have bugs when opened, and that some big brands like Miracle Gro Don't actually drain well. What do you guys use?
I think it'd be good to repot it. You should use a smaller pot than that when you repot it too. I've heard semi-shallow pots are best for aloe, cause they have shallow root systems, but a normal pot will work fine, as long as the overall volume of the pot is not too large. Pots that are too big stay wet too long, and Aloe Vera will not tolerate being wet all the time. Clay pots are best because they are porous, and allow water to evaporate through the outside surface of the pot. You'll notice that when you water a clay pot, the outside of the pot can feel damp. This is how well they breath. Any good quality potting soil will work fine. What matters the most, is to mix in at least 50% grit into the soil to ensure proper drainage. There's a product called Grani-Grit, that I use, and it's great. It's just crushed granite, and comes in 50lb bags. You'd want the "GROWER" size. It's a bit heavy, but I find the extra weight to come in handy, and kinda like it. Pumice is another great choice to use for grit too. It's not as heavy as the Grani-Grit either, if that's a concern. Pumice is great stuff. I've never really been a fan of perlite. Not exactly sure why, but I just don't care for it. It does float in water. Hope that helps you.

Lpnj42
Newly Registered
Posts: 5
Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:47 pm

Re: Indoor potted aloe problem (broken/rotting stem?)

Thought some of you might get a chuckle out of this. Behold, my temporary solution. Just until I have what I need to replant. Two filled water bottles and some loosely wrapped filament tape holding the aloe upright, preventing further damage to the stem.
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baileysup
Green Thumb
Posts: 435
Joined: Fri Nov 12, 2010 11:04 am
Location: NE-PA(Zone 6a-5b)

Re: Indoor potted aloe problem (broken/rotting stem?)

Hey, it works for now. Just make sure you get rid of all the mushy parts before letting it dry out ;) Also, keep an eye on the leaves too. Looking at the marks on the leaves, it could be a pest also :shock:



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