Back to: Nature online

Seeds of Trade

 
-

Product: Aloe

Other products:  
   Aloe belongs to the category Important drugs
   and originated in Africa

 SUMMARY
 WILD RELATIVES
 ORIGINS
 EARLY USES
 TRANSFER AND SPREAD
 AGRICULTURE
 MODERN CONTEXT
  POST HARVEST


ALOE

Aloe vera (L.) Burm. f. (Liliaceae, or as a member of the segregate family Aloeaceae).

First described by Carolus Linnaeus as a variety of another species (Aloe perfoliata L.) in 1753, using materials from cultivation in India and the New World, as well as European gardens.

Native to Africa; now cultivated worldwide.

Life form: woody herbaceous perennial, sometimes tree-like.

Parts used: sticky sap of leaves used as a medicinal; crystallised sap used as a purgative (laxative).

Ploidy level: diploid.

  

Illustration from the Plate Collection of the Botany Library at the Natural History Museum, London (Aloe species - Aloe)