ISI 2003-17. Aloe ‘Jacobs Ladder’

Grown for many years in the Huntington’s Desert Garden as A. dawei, this appears to be a hybrid of that species, one deserving of a cultivar name. The uniform pastel orange color of its flowers is distinctive enough, but their arrangement is also unusual: the buds spread horizontally, resembling the parallel rungs of a ladder. This inspired the cultivar name, a reference to the dream of the Biblical patriarch Jacob in which he saw angels ascending and descending a ladder to heaven. A rather lofty reference, perhaps, but the plant is particularly beautiful after a winter storm when each flower bud holds a drop of rainwater at its tip. Colorful buds give way to pendent flowers that extend the display over much of southern California’s winter. Rosettes grow to about 2' in diameter. Rooted cuts of HBG 29892, a plant received from our predecessor, the International Succulent Institute, in Sept., 1972, as A. morogoroensis (a vegetatively similar but smaller species with different flowers) without further data. $7.50.

Photo © 2003 by John N. Trager. Images may not be used elsewhere without permission.

Published in the Cactus and Succulent Journal, Vol. 75 (2), March - April, 2003