If you’ve found yourself with a group of aloe plants that have become a bit crowded in their pot, consider splitting and propagating the plants. By separating the plants and transplanting them into new containers, you will end up with a few new potted aloe plants. In this guide, I’ll run through how I successfully divide both aloe plants with divisions and aloe plants with pups.
How to Split an Aloe Plant
If you have an overgrown aloe plant or one with lots of pups, you may be thinking about splitting your monster aloe into two or more plants.
The best time to split an aloe plant is in the late winter or early spring, right before the plant resumes rapid growth. You can divide plants at other times, but early in the year is the best choice.
Once your aloe plant is in hand, follow these steps to split/divide it.
Splitting an Aloe Plant with Divisions
Sometimes, aloe plants naturally divide, which makes the propagation process even easier. The result is what appears to be two or more large aloe plants growing next to each other.
Follow these steps to separate these divisions into multiple plants.
1) Remove the Plant from the Planter
If you’re splitting your plant indoors, lay out an old sheet or towel to allow for easy cleanup.
Gently tug on the aloe plant until its root ball slides out from the pot. If the root ball is difficult to remove, you can try tapping the sides of the pot.
Knock off any loose soil to get a better look at roots.
2) Identify and Separate Individual Plants
Once the root ball is out of the pot, it’s time to tease apart the individual plants. Each rosette of leaves can be separated into an individual plant.
Depending on the strength and vigor of the plant’s roots, you may be able to separate the roots using your hands. If this proves difficult or the plants begin breaking, grab a clean knife or pair of pruning shears.
Aim to cut the roots, so each individual plant is left with enough roots to thrive.
Splitting an Aloe Plant with Offsets
Aloe plants are known for producing offsets, aka plantlets or pups. These small plants emerge at the base of larger aloe plants.
Removing the pups from the parent plant will give the larger plant sufficient space to grow. It will also provide you with another potted aloe plant.
Splitting pups from a larger aloe plant is as simple as removing the smaller plants from the pot. You can often remove the smaller plant while leaving the larger one in the container.
To remove the pup, grasp it near the base and gently wiggle. You can cut the roots with a knife if it doesn’t easily come loose.
How to Transplant an Aloe Plant
Once you have an unpotted aloe plant, it’s time to give it a new home.
First, you’ll need to find a container with drainage holes. The container should be just a bit larger than the plant’s root system (you can also consider growing transplanted aloe plants in water).
Next, fill the bottom quarter of the pot with well-draining potting soil. Since aloe plants are succulents, they can handle drought but hate wet soil.
It’s best to use a potting mix that is designed for cacti and succulents.
Add the aloe plant to the pot, then fill the remaining empty space with more soil mix. Water well and place the plant in a warm and dry location with bright light.
Whilst aloe plants offer a host of uses and benefits, the latex layer between an aloe leaf’s skin and flesh is considered toxic, so it’s generally prudent to wear protective gloves when performing these types of plant care activities.
Provide You New Plants with the Proper Care
After you transplant your aloe plant, you can expect it to exhibit a few signs of stress. However, providing it with the proper care will allow it to recover and grow into a healthy plant.
For more, see our in-depth guide on where to position Aloe plants in the home for optimal care and feng shui benefits.
Briana holds a B.S. in Plant Sciences from Penn State University. She manages a small market garden where she grows vegetables and herbs. She also enjoys growing flowers and houseplants at home.