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Products > Aloe schelpei
Aloe schelpei - Shelpe's Aloe

Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Succulent
Family: Aloeaceae (Aloes)
Origin: Ethiopia (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Red/Purple Foliage: Yes
Flower Color: Orange Red
Bloomtime: Fall
Height: 1-2 feet
Width: 3-5 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 25-30 F
Aloe schelpei (Shelpe's Aloe) A freely-branching aloe that forms dense low clumps with open rosettes of blue-green 12-18 inch long by 4 inch wide gracefully recurved leaves with pink margins. In late fall (typically November into December here) appear 1-2 foot tall branching inflorescences topped with dense heads (cylindrical-conical) of multicolored flowers that are deep red in bud and pale orange upon opening. Plant in full sun in a well-drained soil and irrigate occasionally to infrequently. Hardy to 25 F (Undamaged in our 2007 freeze at this temperature) and listed as hardy to upper 20s under tree canopies at the Ruth Bancroft Garden. This aloe comes from grasslands and steep slopes at around 7,000 feet in the Boli Gorge in the Shoa Province of Ethiopia. It was described by Gilbert Westacott Reynolds in 1961 from flowering material in cultivation and named to honor Dr. Edmund Andre (Ted) Schelpe (1924-1985) of the Bolus Herbarium at the University of Cape Town, who discovered the plant in 1952 on a steep grassland slope on a private farm across from the Mugar River (Blue Nile) in the Boli Gorge. Our plants from Brian Kemble of the Ruth Bancroft Garden in Walnut Creek who sent us a cutting off of his plant in 2004.  The information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library and from online sources as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens that we have visited. We have also incorporated comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have some additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips that would aid others in growing  Aloe schelpei.