Aloe longistyla

Overall Plant Beginning to Bloom
Common Name: Karoo aloe 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asphodelaceae
Native Range: South Africa
Zone: 9 to 11
Height: 0.50 to 0.75 feet
Spread: 5.00 to 0.75 feet
Bloom Time: Seasonal bloomer
Bloom Description: Orange
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy
Leaf: Evergreen
Other: Thorns
Tolerate: Drought, Dry Soil, Shallow-Rocky Soil


Best grown in dry, sandy loams in full sun to partial shade. Provide supplemental irrigation during the summer growing season for the fastest growth and best appearance. Allow the soil to dry completely before watering. Greatly reduce watering during the winter dormant period. Hardy in Zones 9b(25°F)-11.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Aloe longistyla, commonly called Karoo aloe, is a dwarf, succulent perennial endemic to rocky slopes in the Western and Eastern Cape provinces of South Africa. This aloe is typically solitary but may slowly form small colonies from offsets. Mature rosettes can reach 6-8" tall with an equal width. The thickened, upright, lanceolate foliage is grey-green in color with small teeth along the margins and can reach up to 6" long and 1.5" wide. The 2" long, orange, tubular flowers are borne on a compact, dense, unbranched raceme reaching 10" tall. The bloom time of this species is seasonally variable.

The genus name Aloe comes from the Arabic name of these perennial succulents.

The specific epithet longistyla means "long style" and refers to the style of this species which can protrude up to an inch passed the flower tepals.

The common name Karoo aloe refers to the Karoo region of South Africa where this plant is native.


No major pest or disease problems of note. Overly moist or waterlogged soils will lead to root or crown rot.


Specimen plant for xeriscaping, desert gardens, and rock gardens. Suitable for container culture. Takes well to being grown indoors as a houseplant.