Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

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Chris L
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Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby Chris L » Wed Sep 13, 2017 4:58 pm

My nephew is learning about WW2 at school and he asked if we had any pictures from then. We managed to find a few, including this one which shows my Grandad (on the right) stood next to what looks like a large Aloe.

I am obviously not expecting anyone to say what species it is, but is it indeed an Aloe? It looks like one to me. Either that or it is a Yucca, perhaps.

This picture will have been taken in either South Africa, Madagascar, India or Burma.

grandad_in_WW2.jpg


aloe.jpg
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Re: Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby iann » Wed Sep 13, 2017 5:19 pm

Looks more like an Aloe than a Yucca.
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Re: Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby esp » Wed Sep 13, 2017 5:43 pm

It looks like Aloe ferox
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Re: Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby Chris L » Wed Sep 13, 2017 6:22 pm

Thanks (tu) (tu)

Does that pin the location of the photo to South Africa or Madagascar then?

I've looked at that photo dozens of times and only today did I notice what the plant was. :oops:
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Re: Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby Aiko » Wed Sep 13, 2017 8:30 pm

Too bad they chopped one down...

Could also be an Aloe marlothii, by the way. But definately an Aloe.
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Re: Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby RICHAUD » Thu Sep 14, 2017 6:36 am

the spikes of marlothii are + or - horizontal and on the photos they are dressed :ferox (tu)
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Re: Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby Tony R » Thu Sep 28, 2017 8:01 pm

Chris L wrote:Does that pin the location of the photo to South Africa or Madagascar then?


Here is a photo of A. ferox in the Western Cape SA when I visited in 2011:

2011-11-14 006 Aloe ferox.jpg
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Re: Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby Andrew9 » Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:38 pm

How hardy is A. ferox?

Saw one for sale recently and wondered if it has any chance of surviving in a sheltered spot in a garden on the south coast.
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Re: Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby Chris L » Sat Oct 07, 2017 11:56 am

I've found this passage in a book about the East Lancashire Regiment. This is the only bit that covers South Africa. Does Aloe ferox grow at either Pietermaritzburg or Durban (or anywhere in between).


The 22nd East African Bde. captured Tananarive on September 23rd, and Madagascar surrendered unconditionally. Captain Skewes-Cox with a detachment of East Lancashires represented the Regiment at a Peace Parade on October 6th, and was complimented by General Sir William Platt for the best turned out detachment. The Bn. remained at Tamatave until October 18th, on which day it embarked in the Empire Pride and sailed, together with the 29th Bde. for Durban, arriving on October 24th, and going at once to Pietermaritzburg, only to return to Durban again on November 1st. Here Lt.-Col. Thatcher together with Capt. Wilkinson and reinforcements joined the Bn. After spending a happy Christmas holiday in Durban the Bn. embarked in the City of Paris and sailed for India on January 8th, 1943.
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Re: Aloe[?] ID (from WW2 - old picture)

Postby Paul in Essex » Sat Oct 07, 2017 5:09 pm

Andrew9 wrote:How hardy is A. ferox?

Saw one for sale recently and wondered if it has any chance of surviving in a sheltered spot in a garden on the south coast.


Not the hardiest of aloes but in very well drained soil, south facing position and , ideally, overhead cover in winter it may do ok. I've tried it and lost it a couple of times.

Currently I have the similar-looking but potentially hardier Aloe spectabilis (considered a form of marlothii) doing ok after a couple of winters with a plastic umbrella to cover it in winter.
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