Last Updated on August 10, 2022 by Griselda M.
The aloe vera plant white fungus is a disease that commonly affects the aloe vera plant and presents as a white substance, powder deposit, or scale on the leaves of the plant. Let us find out more about what this fungus is, its effects on the aloe vera plant, and its possible causes.
Aloe vera is an evergreen succulent plant with soft, spiky green leaves. Inside these leaves is a thick, clear, or white, sticky sap that is used for various purposes. It has been used for thousands of years for its medicinal and cosmetic properties. Aloe vera usually grows in the desert, so it grows well in sandy and rocky soils that are well draining and dry out quickly. It occurs in tropical and subtropical areas across the globe.
Aloe vera is a low-maintenance plant that requires very little care if planted in the right soil and provided with ideal growing conditions. This plant is rarely affected by diseases but there is one common one that affects them – the aloe vera white fungus.
Aloe Vera White Fungus
The white fungus that you see on your aloe vera plant is most likely powdery mildew or an infestation of mealybugs. Both of these are usually associated with environmental stress where the plant is grown.
Powdery mildew and mealybug attack on aloe vera plants is the most common cause of the white spots you see on your plants. The cause of powdery mildew is either excessive sunlight exposure or lack of light exposure.
Another common cause of white fungus on aloe vera plants is Duplachionaspis exalbida, commonly known as the common white aloe scale. White Aloe Scale is a species of armored scale insect. This means that these insects produce an outer coating that covers their bodies, protecting them from pathogens. Because of this protection, they are well protected from topical pesticides, making them a challenge to get rid of.
Root causes of fungal infections on Aloe Vera plants
Fungal infections or attacks on aloe vera plants are usually a result of the plants being stressed. A stressed plant is much easier to attack than a healthy one. Some of the common causes of this stress that make them susceptible to infections include:
- Overwatering – Since aloes are desert plants, they are not well adapted to water-logged conditions and will not respond well to overwatering. To avoid this problem, only water your aloe plants when the top 1/2 inch of the soil has dried.
- Insufficient air circulation – indoor aloe vera plants placed in an environment that has bad air circulation will result in conditions that are a breeding ground for fungi. Ensure that your indoor plants get sufficient air circulation where they are placed.
- Sudden temperature changes – abrupt temperature changes can cause shock to the plant, weakening it and making it susceptible to fungal attacks. Make sure that you guard against any sudden temperature changes, especially in winter.
- Lack of nitrogen or other nutrients can cause your aloe vera to appear pale and unhealthy. Nourish your plants with a nitrogen-based fertilizer to ensure happy, healthy plants.
- Insufficient sunlight – This is called etiolation and occurs when a plant is grown in insufficient sunlight. Aloe is a desert plant and requires a lot of sunlight
- Fertilizer buildup – Believe it or not, giving your aloe plant too much fertilizer can kill it! Make sure you fertilize roughly once a month using a fertilizer specifically formulated for succulents like this one:
How To Treat Aloe Vera Plant White Fungus
If your aloe vera plant has been infected with a white fungus, there are a couple of options available for you to remedy the situation;
- You can spray the white stuff off the leaves with water and clean with a soft brush
- You can also make water and vinegar mix and follow the same process as described above
- A water and insecticidal soap mix will work even better
- You could also remove the infected leaves to prevent the fungus from spreading to the healthy leaves
- Use a natural fungicide like neem oil, mixed with soap and water to spray on the infected parts of the plant. Repeat this process every 1-2 days until the white fungus disappears.
- Rubbing alcohol is an effective way to remove insects from your aloe vera. Gently wipe the white deposit off with a paper towel and the rubbing alcohol
- If you have tried all these possible solutions and nothing works, repot your plant. The soil in which the plant is grown may be the source of the problem.
There you have it. All you need to know about the aloe vera plant white fungus. If you carefully follow the above information, you will be in a better position to diagnose, treat or even prevent white fungus from infecting your aloe vera plants. Give your plants the right amount of sunlight, and air circulation and have a good watering schedule. If your plant is already infected and you wish to try some of the outlined solutions, make sure that the method you use is safe. You may first test it out on a small area of the plant before you apply it to the whole plant.
Read more about How To Get Rid Of White Spots On Aloe Plants?
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does my aloe vera have white stuff?
The white stuff is most often associated with the plant's natural response to infection. The white stuff and white spots are different. White spots are not an indication of disease, and there are a number of causes of white spots on your aloe vera, including old age, seasonal variation, or even sunlight.
How do I get rid of white spots on my aloe plant?
The white spots on your aloe plant may be a sign of a fungal infection. To get rid of this you will need to apply a safe fungicide. You may also move your aloe to a spot where it will receive a good amount of sunlight and air circulation.
Why is there white mold on my plant?
White mold can be the result of any number of different problems. These symptoms are common for plants that are stressed out and not getting enough sunlight. They are also common for plants that have been over-watered. It is possible that this has happened to your aloe vera and the solution is simply to water your plant less often.
Why is there white mold on my plant soil?
White mold is a fungus that thrives in the shade and will grow when there is excess moisture. To avoid getting mold on your aloe vera, use a pot that is kept well ventilated. You can also try placing your aloe vera in the sun for a few hours during the day to dry out the soil and prevent mold from forming.
Caroline is a gardener who loves to get down to the nitty–gritty of gardening. She proudly proclaims herself as a ‘dirt worshipper‘ and can often be found deep in the garden, covered in soil and singing to her plants. As a self–proclaimed ‘plant whisperer‘, Caroline believes that plants need love and attention just like any other living thing, and she loves to give them both. When she‘s not tending to her garden, you can often find her researching the latest gardening trends, or teaching others how to make their gardens thrive