Photo: Ivan Latti
Author: Ivan Latti
Aloe mitriformis now called Aloe perfoliata
Aloe mitriformis is one of the Western Cape creeping or trailing aloes. The name has been changed to A. perfoliata. The plant branches repeatedly and sustains leaves only towards the ends of branches. These leaf rosettes are too large and heavy for the thin branches to support in an erect position, leaving the stems procumbent.
Leaves are short, broad, blue-green and smooth. The teeth on the edges are characteristically variable in colour as can be seen in the picture provided here. Leaf colour varies according to the plant’s position in sun or shade as well as the watering it receives. The inflorescence is usually a panicle consisting of up to five branches. The racemes are short and vary from flat-topped or rounded to conical. Flowers are slender, densely clustered and bright red to pinkish red. They appear throughout summer. In nature the plant receives its rain in winter.
Mitriformis comes from the leaf rosette's likeness to a mitre or bishop’s headgear. This Aloe is not considered to be threatened (Van Wyk and Smith, 2003; Jeppe, 1969).