Posted by Newt on January 18, 2003 at 18:37:56:
In Reply to: Help on Aloa Vera Plant posted by Donna on January 18, 2003 at 17:32:24:
: I just rescued an aloa vera plant from a vacant house. It has become so overgrown that it has fallen over and come out of the dirt. The leaves are huge and green still even though it has been left with no water. How do I repot the plant since I don't see any roots. The soil has become so dry that the bottoms of the plant have been laying on top of the dirt for months. Can I place them in water to grow roots before replanting or should I place them in dirt?
: Any help?
I'm trying to visualize your plant and having a bit of trouble. So, here's a few things you can try depending on the situation.
Just to give you some background: In order to root succulents, which an aloe is, one would cut off a piece of stem and let it harden with a callous for a couple to four days with no water. Just let it sit on a piece of paper. If you were to just put it in water to root it would rot.
If the plant has any roots I would recommend watering it well a couple of days before you try anything to make sure the plant is hydrated and the root system won't be too shocked. Do this a couple of days before you attempt to repot. Then take it out of the pot. If it won't come out easily then either cut the pot if it's soft plastic or break the pot so as not to disturb the roots. Repot in a pot that is 2" larger than the root ball and about on third the size of the plant for balance.
If there are absolutely no roots and it's still alive then it probably already has a callous. If there is a stem that is at least an inch long with no leaves you can just use that. If not, remove a few bottom leaves by cutting them off with a sharp knife and let a callous form for 2 to 4 days. Use a pot that is one third the height of the plant, fill with soil, water well and then place the plant on top of the soil inserting the stem into the soil. Water when the first inch of soil dries out. You can tell by poking your finger into the soil up to your first knuckle.
Good luck and let me know how it goes. :)