The Aloe vera plant has been used for thousands of years to heal a variety of conditions, most notably burns, wounds, skin irritations, and constipation. It is grown in subtropical and tropical locations, including South Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Aloe was one of the most frequently prescribed medicines throughout most of the 18th and 19th centuries and it remains one of the most commonly used herbs in the world today, the aloe vera plant.
Sometimes it is described as a “wonder plant“. Aloe is a genus that contains more than 300 species of flowering succulent plants. The Aloe vera leaves are succulent, erect and form a dense rosette. Many uses are made from the gel obtained from the plant’s leaves. Aloe vera has been the subject of much scientific study over the last few years, regarding several claimed therapeutic properties.
The Aloe vera plant has been known and used for centuries for its health, beauty, medicinal and skin care properties. The name Aloe vera derives from the Arabic word “Alloeh” meaning “shining bitter substance,” while “vera” in Latin means “true.” 2000 years ago, the Greek scientists regarded Aloe vera as the universal panacea. The Egyptians called Aloe “the plant of immortality.” Today, the Aloe vera plant has been used for various purposes in dermatology.
The botanical name of Aloe vera is Aloe barbadensis miller. It belongs to Asphodelaceae (Liliaceae) family, and is a shrubby or arborescent, perennial, xerophytic, succulent, pea-green color plant. It grows mainly in the dry regions.It is the most powerful of all the varieties in the Aloe family. It requires a sunny and dry climate. Humid and frost are its worst enemies. Aloe Vera has been recognized as a healing plant by many ancient civilizations for more than two thousand years. The name “burn plant” was derived from its remarkable ability to relieve burn pain. However, given that the solids only account for so tiny a fraction of the Aloe’s total constituency, it is not totally known how the plant produces the healing property. During the past decade, Aloe Vera has become the hype that almost everyone is talking about! It receives the name “miracle plant” and Aloe Vera Gel the “miracle drink”.
Although the appearance of Aloes resembles that of a cactus, they are indeed succulents and belong to the lily family. They are closely related to asparagus, garlic and onions. Like many other plants, Aloe Vera also possesses a defense mechanism to protect it from insects, birds and rodents. The bitter noxious sap below the rind deters any animals that try to eat it.
Aloe plants take 4 – 5 years to reach maturity and it can live for about 12 years.