Is this from not enough light?

Use this forum to discuss matters relating to Aloe, Gasteria, Haworthia and related species. This is where one posts unknown plant photos for ID help.

Moderator: Geoff

Post Reply
User avatar
nsp88
Ready to Bolt
Posts: 608
Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2023 10:48 am
Location: Northeast Texas
USDA Zone: 8a

Is this from not enough light?

#1

Post by nsp88 »

I have a few aloes that are new to me that I am keeping indoors. Three small and/or variegated ones that seem to be doing alright. And three that are a little bit larger and all have now got this darker-with-green-spots-higher-up coloration.

I assumed it was from not enough light so I added some more powerful lights real close to them a couple weeks ago. It might have made a small bit of difference, but I didn't take a before and after picture so I am not really sure. If it did, it didn't do much difference. Is it still not enough light? Or is it not enough time to tell if the new light has helped? Or is it another problem?
Attachments
PXL_20240127_012132595~2.jpg
PXL_20240127_012132595~2.jpg (365.27 KiB) Viewed 573 times
User avatar
JoyinAlb
Bulbil
Posts: 86
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2024 4:38 pm
Location: Albuquerque
USDA Zone: 7b

Re: Is this from not enough light?

#2

Post by JoyinAlb »

They turn brown in the sun. It’s normal. If you look at Aloe Cameronii you see that it turns red in the sun, which is why (or one reason) everyone fell in love with it. Some people hate putting aloe in the sun for that very reason, it can look like it’s dying.
User avatar
nsp88
Ready to Bolt
Posts: 608
Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2023 10:48 am
Location: Northeast Texas
USDA Zone: 8a

Re: Is this from not enough light?

#3

Post by nsp88 »

JoyinAlb wrote: Fri Jan 26, 2024 8:16 pm They turn brown in the sun. It’s normal. If you look at Aloe Cameronii you see that it turns red in the sun, which is why (or one reason) everyone fell in love with it. Some people hate putting aloe in the sun for that very reason, it can look like it’s dying.
Thanks for reply.

So looking closer at them and thinking back, I am wondering if two of the aloes are what you are talking about about. I think the third might be different.

The two on the left in the photo were never out of light super long. I moved them from the south facing window with dappled shade to the light rack and the color change happened. So they went from lower light to brighter I guess. The damaged leaf tips on the center one were from damage in transit.

As a side note, some of the tiniest agaves I have put on the light rack have shown some light damage. Some seedlings turned red and some turned crispy. The tiny pup in the corner of the square container in this photo is showing some sun stress and leaf crisp. But anything larger than the tiny tiny ones has handled it fine. I would have assumed aloes would be okay with the move but I don't really know anything about aloes.

But the third aloe (the one on the right in the photo), I got separately and it was at a time when I didn't really have room in the south window to isolate it so it wasn't getting enough sun for a couple weeks. It started to turn brownish so I put it in the rack early and just took a risk on pests. The color never got better, and now it looks like the rightmost leaf is dying. The coloring is more brown than red, so I don't know if it is sun stress or not? Maybe it is just losing a leaf from all the stress? Maybe it is just holding onto the off color until new growth? I don't know enough about aloes to know.
Attachments
PXL_20240127_222049870~2.jpg
PXL_20240127_222049870~2.jpg (357.79 KiB) Viewed 516 times
User avatar
JoyinAlb
Bulbil
Posts: 86
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2024 4:38 pm
Location: Albuquerque
USDA Zone: 7b

Re: Is this from not enough light?

#4

Post by JoyinAlb »

In my experience the brown is caused by anthocyanin, the natural sunblock of succulents. If the leaf gets skinny, dry and brown, then the plant is using the stored water and killing the leaf, like your first photo. Your aloe on the right looks to me like it was in bright light but was moved away from it and the brown is fading. Or it’s getting inconsistent lighting, like certain areas are sheltered by other leafs or the lights are hitting them just in that area causing it to turn brown.
Dark green is the color of death and I don’t see that. Yours look fat and healthy and like they are getting UV.

These photos are internet grabs, not mine. The first one is drowned. It’s flat, dark green and almost glossy translucent. It will die. The others are all brown from sun. There are even some that have dappled sun spots similar to yours.
Attachments
IMG_6624.jpeg
IMG_6624.jpeg (471.59 KiB) Viewed 503 times
IMG_6626.jpeg
IMG_6626.jpeg (206.89 KiB) Viewed 503 times
IMG_6627.jpeg
IMG_6627.jpeg (89.98 KiB) Viewed 503 times
IMG_6628.jpeg
IMG_6628.jpeg (332.47 KiB) Viewed 503 times
User avatar
JoyinAlb
Bulbil
Posts: 86
Joined: Thu Jan 25, 2024 4:38 pm
Location: Albuquerque
USDA Zone: 7b

Re: Is this from not enough light?

#5

Post by JoyinAlb »

After thinking about this for a bit I realized that it could be both brown and water logged? If you press on the leaf and it feels squishy, or easily depressed then it’s drowning. If it is, then take it out of the soil for like a week or more and dry it out.
Last year I didn’t have any soil on my aloes (mostly because I forgot to add it to the pot) for like 4 months. I pulled them out of their pots outside at like 10 at night because of a quick freeze warning. I tossed them, roots down, into a 5 gallon pot and they sat like that from October to February. No lights, no soil. I realized what did half way through but said “what the hell..” and left them that way.
Anyhow, if you are worried that it has drowned, just pluck it out of the soil and air it out.
User avatar
nsp88
Ready to Bolt
Posts: 608
Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2023 10:48 am
Location: Northeast Texas
USDA Zone: 8a

Re: Is this from not enough light?

#6

Post by nsp88 »

K thanks! Nothing super squishy. I have only watered it once in the 2 months I have had it so I don't think that is it. I pulled lights a little further away. Guess time will tell.
Post Reply