Although this cultivar starts flowering as a small plant it will grow into a medium-sized aloe in a few years. It has shown itself to be an excellent container subject, so much so that I have had to change my opinion of aloes in containers to some extent. The year before, in the same pot, the sample plant produced two inflorescences. In 2018 the same plant had 5 inflorescences, showing that aloes are capable of producing superior flower performance in containers, given the right conditions. The flower show lasted from autumn throughout the winter months. The flowers are long-lasting and of a superior yellow colour, from bud to open flower. Another feature of this flower is the volume of the raceme. This is created by the horizontal aspect of the open flowers (meaning that open flowers do not hang down but stand at right angles to the peduncle). The individual flower has a slightly open apex. Every visitor who saw this fantastic display had to have one and we soon ran out of stock.
The plant itself, not to be outdone by the flower, is very decorative in its own right. The neat, grey-green leaves are lined with pink (yes, pink) spines. Imagine my surprise when this pink-spined plant produced its first golden yellow flower. Stem shoots are sometimes produced in small numbers, but my advice would be to remove these as soon as it can be done easily. This aloe deserves to grow and flower as a single-rosetted plant. Although division of the rosette has not been observed in ‘Nugget’, plants approaching maturity may well do so. ‘Nugget’ can easily hold its own in open planting towards the front of the rockery where it can get a lot of sun. The pot in the picture is in full sun on the paving next to the pool.
Aloe ‘Nugget’ is more than deserving of its place at the top of every gardener’s ‘Must have’ list.
Updated 17 March 2020