Aloe Aristata's exotic flower

Growing succulents is an adventure. They are beautifully shaped plants that never cease to amaze us. All kinds are fascinating.

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I have a friend who owns a plant sale. Her name is Marizol. She is a very kind person and has an incredible variety of plants. I frequent her shop so much that we have become friends. One day I went to get some fertilizers, and she surprised me because she had a succulent as a gift, different from the ones I have at home. It is an Aloe aristata.

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When Marizol gave me this succulent, I felt immense happiness. It was a beautiful gift since I did not expect it. I know it was a gesture of friendship and trust since she knew that I would take the best care of this plant. When I took this plant home, it still didn't have a flower stalk, but after a week, it began to show through the center of the plant and, I captured all the stages of growth, and finally, I can see the flower that would come out of it.

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The first time, I saw that the tip of the flower stalk ended in a kind of protuberance very similar to an artichoke. The compact structure between each lobe gave me the impression that when blooming it would look like small flowers and would open like conventional flowers. That is, with well-differentiated, rounded petals and with a pistil and stamens visible.

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My ignorance was immense. I had never looked for information about this type of flower. I had been guided until then by the recommendations given by my friend to take care of this plant, but I had not had the opportunity to see photos on the internet. So as I went through the flowering process, this beautiful plant was teaching me a lot along the way.

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About a couple of weeks passed, and the flower stalk grew 15 centimeters in height. This is not a very rigid structure and is photosensitive. If the sun is in a given direction, the stem bends looking for light. There were days when the stem was very tilted, and I was afraid that it would split and I would not be able to see its bloom.

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Step by step, this upper cluster was changing its round lobular structure for more elongated units and reached a particular size and began to separate from the central part. It was beautiful to see how this part of the plant was transforming.

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When each elongated bud began to open, I felt very excited but far from what I had imagined, Aloe aristata flowers in stages. First, they open their lower petals until they reach the upper part. They are tubular bell-shaped flowers with beautiful orange shades. They seem to be painted with a delicate brush.

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This exotic flower took its time to exhibit all its beauty. I had a total of 18 petals. Already today, the bottom ones are starting to dry out while the top ones are still opening. Now I am going to prepare for the next few weeks as the flower stalk will dry up and fall off. I will put my best effort into its care to make it through the winter successfully and hope that at some point, this plant will have offspring or bloom again.

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Thanks for reading. See you in a future post!
All photographs are property of the author.

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