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Aloe barberae

English: Tree aloe; Afrikaans: Boomaalwyn

Aloe barberae is a striking sculptural tree, reaching 15m in height and 1m in stem diameter. It bears a rounded, neat crown, with forked branching. It forms an excellent focal point in the garden. It is easily distinguished by its grey, smooth bark, green recurved leaves and pink flowers during winter. It thrives in cultivation and is easily propagated. Due to its massive stem base, it should preferably not be planted close to any buildings or retaining walls. Flowers rose pink (green-tipped) and appear during June and July.

Its habitat is subtropical coastal forests, kloofs and dry valleys in the summer rainfall eastern regions of southern Africa. Aloe barberae is widely distributed from near East London in Eastern Cape through the former Transkei area, KwaZulu-Natal, Swaziland and Mpumalanga and northwards to Mozambique and East Africa.

This tree grows in warm, well-drained river valleys and coastal forest where the climate is mild and reasonable rainfall. Not frost resistant. In habitat the plants are pollinated by sunbirds.

 
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