spots on aloe

Asked October 19, 2015, 12:38 PM EDT

What causes spots (looks like lesions) and brown tips on aloe plants and what can be done to avoid this?

Floyd County Kentucky horticulture

1 Response

Leaf spots can result from too much water in the media/soil .Poor growing conditions can cause symptoms in aloe plants that resemble disease symptoms. Tip die back can occur in poorly drained, over-watered soil. Water-soaked spots appear on the leaf tips, and the tips eventually turn brown and shrivel while the rest of the leaf remains healthy and green. Proper growing conditions help prevent tip dieback. There are leaf diseases of Aloe vera; Aloe rust causes black spots; Alternaria spp have been recently identified as a cause of leaf spots on Aloe vera. In that insect pests such as aphids and mites attack Aloe and can cause leaf spots eliminating that as a cause is necessary.
There are several common conditions necessary for good health of aloe. A well-drained media, direct or indirect sunlight is adequate and low humidity creates a good environment for container growing. Aloe is tolerant of high pH. If your soil does not meet the requirements re-potting would be recommended. It might be preferred to plant one of the "pups" if the small plants exist for propagation and discard the original plant.
It is recommended that a sample of leaf with the spots be taken to your local County Extension Office to be submitted to the University of Kentucky Diagnostic Laboratory for identification of the leaf spot cause.