Aloe Vera has been one of those mystical plants. People talk about its healing properties, many of which have been well documented and publicized. Today I want to discuss some of the lesser known things about Aloe Vera. Hopefully you will find this educational and entertaining.
Scientists aren’t really sure of the natural range of Aloe Vera. It is suspected that there were once large stands of Aloe Vera in the natural habitat, but tracing exactly what that habitat was has proven to be a challenge. Finding the original range has been made more difficult because it has been so widely imported because of its popularity as a folk medicine.
The earliest known reference to medicinal use of Aloe Vera comes from the 16th century BC in what is known as the Ebers Papyrus, a scroll documenting the medical knowledge of the time. The Ebers Papyrus contains around 700 remedies.
Aloe Vera is a member of the lily family, and is related to garlic and onions. Who knew?
The topical use of Aloe Vera is not connected to any significant side effects!
Aloe Latex, known as Aloin, surrounds the “gel” part of the inner leaf was the first commercially used part of the Aloe Vera plant. It was used for many years as a laxative.
Aristotle taught Alexander the Great about using Aloe Vera for treating wounds and other ailments. Alexander supplied his military with Aloe Vera when they went to battle.
Cleopatra used Aloe Vera as a part of her daily skin care regimen.
The flower of the Aloe Vera plant grows on a single spike from the center of the plant. The spike can grow to be 3 feet tall. The flowers have both pistils and stamens, but the pollen in each plant is produced before the female flower has fully matured to prevent the plant from pollinating itself.
There are over 240 known varieties of Aloe Vera plants. Only four varieties are commonly used commercially.
- Aloe Vera plants can live to be over 100 years old!