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Aloe megalacantha var. megalacantha Baker

Large-toothed aloe

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassLiliopsidaMonocots (plants with a single seed leaf); includes the lily family
SubclassLiliidaeIncludes lilies, orchids, and many others
OrderAsparagalesA diverse group that includes asparagus
FamilyXanthorrhoeaceaeAloes, many tropical plants, flax lilies, daylilies, many others
GenusAloeMeans “goddess” in ancient Sanskrit, for its reputed use as a beauty aid; some sources suggest that the name comes from Alloeh, meaning “shining bitter substance”
Speciesmegalacantha“Black thorn”
var.megalacantha“Black thorn”

About plant names...

These aloes are native to Ethiopia (Harar Province), and Somalia.

Identification: This species occurs in groups and is 1½-3′ (50-100 cm) in height. Leaves occur on the upper portion of the stem, in group of 24 or more. Leaves are 2-2½′ (60-80 cm) × 5-6″ (13-15 cm), curving back on themselves. They are glossy green and deeply furrowed, with hard pink edges and reddish brown teeth that are ~3/16″ (5-6 mm) long. The flowering stalks are heavily branched, about 3′ (1 m) tall, supporting cone-like flowerheads with red or yellow flowers.

See the Aloe comparison table.

Aloe megalacantha (Large-toothed aloe)

Photo by BotBln, from the Botanical Gardens Berlin-Dahlem.

Online References:

JSTOR Plant Science


Aloe megalacantha

Aloe magnidentata


Aloe megalacantha var. megalacantha description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 25 May 2020.

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Aloe megalacantha (Large-toothed aloe)

2/26/2010 · San Diego Zoo, San Diego, Cali­fornia

Aloe megalacantha (Large-toothed aloe)

2/26/2010 · San Diego Zoo, San Diego, Cali­fornia

Range: Zones 9b-11:

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