Aloe vera plant diseases

Updated July 19, 2017

Aloe Vera is a succulent in the lily family that has long been prized for its healing abilities. The thick gelatinous substance inside the Aloe Vera thick leaves soothes burns and relieves itches due to allergy or bug bite. This plant is native to the Mediterranean and Africa and grows in full or partial sun. Although Aloe Vera is a low maintenance plants, it is a susceptible to a few diseases. With a few preventive steps, you can keep your Aloe Vera plant healthy for years to come.

Black or Sooty Mold

This fungus is most commonly found on plants that have been infested with whitefly, mealy bugs or aphids, any insect that feeds on the sap of the plant leaves. These insects leave behind a substance called honey dew. The fungus then feeds on the honey dew. This fungus should not kill your Aloe but it's ugly. You will need to treat the both the fungus and insect infestation to rid your plant of this disease. Insecticidal soap will kill the aphids and a fungicide will remove the sooty mould


Rot is caused when Aloe Vera plant's soil or surroundings are too moist. The leaves may yellow or seem to wilt. The stem may become dark and the leaves even fall off. Remove the plants from its container and inspect the roots. Remove any slimy or discoloured roots and any affected leaves. Leave the plant to dry out for a day. Treat the remaining stem and leaves with a fungicide and replant in a new pot. Allow the soil to dry thoroughly between watering to prevent this disease.

Rust Spots

Although not usually fatal, rust spots will discolour the leaves of your Aloe Vera and make them unattractive. This disease is caused by a type of fungus that grows when water is left on a leaf for too long or the plant is receiving insufficient light. Unhealthy plants are more likely to fall prey to this disease. To prevent this disease, water at the soil line, leaving the leaves dry. Remove affected leaves and in severe cases, spray with a fungicide.

Bacterial Leaf Rot

A relatively new disease, Bacterial leaf rot was discovered in 2000. This disease is caused by bacteria. Dark green splotches which look like water stains begin on the base of the leaf. Eventually the leaf turns yellow and rots off. Bacterial Leaf Rot is fatal to the plant. This disease is prevalent in over watered Aloe Vera.

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About the Author

Shawna Kennedy has been writing and editing professionally since 2004. She's published numerous articles online and two of her edited manuscripts have been contracted and published by Random House.