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Aloe vera

Aloe vera is a succulent plant species of the family Asphodelaceae and genus Aloe.  It is a stemless,  evergreen perennial plant growing to 60-100 centimetres. The native distribution range of Aloe vera is uncertain. It is accepted that the origin of the plant is Arabia, Somalia or Sudan.  It grows in tropical, semi-tropical, and arid climates around the world. The Aloe vera is also naturalized in Assam. The Assamese common is Chalkuori, Salkowri or Chalkonore (ছাল কুঁৱৰী). The other common names are English Curacao Aloe, Barbados Aloe, Indian Aloe, Jaffarabad Aloe, Medicinal Aloe, Burn Plant, Hindi Gheekumari घीकुमारी, Malayalam Chotthu Kathalai, Marathi Khorpad, Tamil Kathalai, etc.

The plant is very popular indoor plant. It has valuable medicinal properties. Aloe vera is effective as a treatment for wounds, burns, frostbite, rashes, psoriasis, cold sores, or dry skin. It has a well recognized moisturizing emollient effect. So it is used in traditional medicine as a skin treatment. Two substances – clear gel and yellow latex are collected from leaves of Aloe vera and used in commercial products like makeup, tissues, moisturizers, soaps, sunscreens, incense, shaving cream, shampoos, etc. Aloe latex is used for relief of constipation.  The dried form of Aloe latex, called resin or as aloe dried juice may be produced.

The leaves of Aloe vera are thick and fleshy, green to grey-green, with some varieties showing white flecks on their upper and lower stem surfaces. The margin of the leaf is serrated and has small white teeth. The flowers are produced in summer on a spike up to 90 cm (35 in) tall, each flower being pendulous, with a yellow tubular corolla.  

Scientific classification of Aloe vera
Kingdom        : Plantae
Phylum           : Tracheophyta
Class                : Liliopsida
Order              : Asparagales
Family             : Asphodelaceae
Genus              : Aloe
Binomial name :  Aloe vera (L.) Burm.f.

Aloe barbadensis Mill.
Aloe barbadensis var. chinensis Haw.
Aloe chinensis (Haw.) Baker
Aloe elongata Murray
Aloe flava Pers.
Aloe indica Royle
Aloe lanzae Tod.
Aloe maculata Forssk. (illegitimate)
Aloe perfoliata var. vera L.
Aloe rubescens DC.
Aloe variegata Forssk. (illegitimate)
Aloe vera Mill. (illegitimate)
Aloe vera var. chinensis (Haw.) A. Berger
Aloe vera var. lanzae Baker
Aloe vera var. littoralis J.Koenig ex Baker
Aloe vulgaris Lam.

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