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Products > Aloe nubigena
Aloe nubigena - Graskop Cliff Aloe
Working on getting this plant out in the field but it is not yet available listing for information only! 
Image of Aloe nubigena
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Succulent
Family: Aloeaceae (now Asphodeloideae)
Origin: South Africa (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Orange
Bloomtime: Summer
Height: <1 foot
Width: 1-2 feet
Exposure: Cool Sun/Light Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 30-32 F
Aloe nubigena (Graskop Cliff Aloe) A very attractive grass aloe that forms dense clumps of many short stems to 10 inches long that are tipped with distichous to slightly rosulate rosettes of 1 to 2 foot long narrow recurving deep green and smooth leaves. These leaves lack nearly all teeth and what little they have are tiny and, though the leaves are succulent, they are not hard or rigid. The 8 to 10 inch long unbranched inflorescences appear most abundantly in warmer months but a few seem to be present nearly year-round in our mild climate and are at first pendant and then arch upwards, holding a cluster of large green tipped orange flowers that droop downwards on 1 inch long slender pedicels. Grow in full coastal sun to part sun or bright shade in a well-drained organically amended soil or potting mix and give regular irrigation in summer months - weekly or every two week irrigation intervals for container grown plants seems to keep them happy. Hardiness is not well tested and though it comes from a relatively high altitude where hard frosts might often occur, it is listed as sensitive to frosts and temperatures much below 30 F in cultivation. Its soft succulent leaves will need some protection from rabbit and other herbivores. This is an interesting and attractive small aloe that should lend itself to a border edge, a raised bed or used as a container plant or even as a hanging basket in mild climate gardens or where it can be winter protected. It is considered rare in its habitat where it grows naturally with mosses lichens and grasses in rocky grasslands and quartzitic sandstone cliffs in the mist belt from 5,000 to 7,000 feet on the north-eastern Drakensberg escarpment in Mpumalanga, South Africa, often found growing on the shader south or east facing slopes. In this habitat there is summer rainfall, some seepage from above and mist that condenses as a fine drizzle to keep plants fairly moist through the warmer times of the year. It is included in the grass aloe group in Aloes: The Definitive Guide and in Grass Aloes in the South African Veld it is noted that This species has on of the longest flowering periods of all the South African grass aloes, from November (equivalent to our May) to late March or April (equivalent to our October)" and in our mild coastal climate, it seems to bloom well into winter. The picture on this page was taken on January 1, 2021 and it has also been photographed here in bloom in late spring, summer and fall. The specific epithet comes from the Latin words 'nubes' meaning clouds and 'genus' meaning "birth" in reference this plants "cloud-born" higher elevation natural habitat. Such cliff dwelling plants are sometimes called succulent cremnophytes or cremnads from the Greek word 'cremnos' meaning "cliff" and 'phuto' or 'phyto' meaning a "plant". It is closely related to the more commonly cultivated Aloe thompsoniae that comes from a similar elevation in the Limpopo province of South Africa, but is a smaller plant with shorter leaves all held distichous on shorter stems and with more open inflorescences. We received Aloe nubigena from the Institute for Aloe Studies in 2009 (as IAS 09-50). We have nice specimen container plants in the nursery that we are working to divide in order to begin selling this very nice plant someday in the future. 

This information about Aloe nubigena displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.