How I Grow Aloe from seed
I don't know the best way to grow Aloes from seed so I'll just share my experiences.
One day last year on a walk just down the street from my (used to be ) office...
|Little used sidewalk with lots of Hesperaloe|
I always thought this area was desolate looking and wondered how they arrived at a decision to plant a berm several hundred yards long with Hesperaloe 20ft on center.
|Hesperaloe Seed Pods NOT Ready!|
Hmmm... these seeds will just end up in the landfill so surely no one will care if I grab a few pods
|Hesperaloe Seed Pods Ready!|
Before planting I soaked the seeds in water for a few days. I was surprised to see green shoots emerging from the soil within days!
|Manfreda spreading in the front yard|
|Manfreda seed pods ready for harvest|
|Manfreda seeds after roughly 2 weeks soaking in water|
|Manfreda seedlings about 1 week after planting|
|Late December 2020|
|Aloe thraskii seeds
|Aloe thraskii seedlings a few days after emerging|
|Aloe thraskii roughly three weeks after planting|
I'm not sure why but the seedlings seemed to have changed color from their original vivid green. Once transplanted they changed back to a richer green color.
I carefully removed several of the seedlings at this point and realized I should have transplanted them a few weeks ago. Their roots are getting tangled and have grown surprisingly long. Some of the plants have a main root that is at least 8+ inches long! Lesson three - start seeds that grow roots aggressively in individual cells rather than an open tray. I've got a bunch of 72 cell trays that would have been perfect.
|Aloe dawei seed pods early Oct, 2020|
Notice how the seed pods in the above shot have opened while still on the stalk? Ideally I would have cut this stalk off earlier and let the pods dry out in a paper bag or some such place away from the wind. It was difficult to remove the above pods without loosing many of the seeds. I've noticed the pods of many aloe and agave will dry and open more quickly if removed from the plant.
|Aloe dawei seeds the next day after removing spent bloom stalks|
|Aloe dawei seedlings late Oct, 2020|
|Aloe dawei - late December, 2020|
|Aloe dawei closeup - late December 2020|
Some of these plants and more have grown larger over the months. I've written about them in a later post about aloe seedling progress in the grow tent.