Far Out Flora

Aloe and Baby Tears Don’t Mix


Succulents Wonderland

Succulents Wonderland.

Back, oh say…shortly after moving to SF, I had to have Baby’s Tears in the garden. It was part of my ‘I heart ground cover’ phase. Not long after planting the Tears, it aggressively started taking over. Seeing a rock encrusted with moss is one thing, but seeing all your succulent babies engulfed in Baby Tears is not cool. So the battle began and only a couple months later…we pretty much irradiated it by delicately pulling it out. However, one Aloe still has a bunch of it nestled within it. Take a look above, just off center to the left. That’s the Aloe that no matter how much I try, I can’t get rid of the Baby’s Tears by weeding alone. Time to pull it out and salvage what I can.

Aloe species with Baby's Tears

Aloe species with Baby

Here’s a detail. Man, I’ve shed a lot of blood trying to pull the Babys Tears (Soleirolia soleirolii Correction…maybe S nobilis…let’s just say species) out those sharp pokey thorns.

Aloe ripped out.

Aloe ripped out.

After digging it out, I gleaned out all the tiny bits of Baby Tears. It seems that even the smallest chunk readily grows back into a lush plant. Yeah…if that’s what you want, Boo…if you’re trying to get rid of it.

Aloe with Baby's Tears

Aloe with Baby

Nice clumper this succulent. For the life of me…we couldn’t find the name for this Aloe and have no idea where we got it. We even put out a SOS to a Flickr group for possible ID. The only response we got was from B├írbol thinking it may be Aloe jucunda. Any other guesses out there?

Baby's Tears

Baby Tears.

This large mass o Baby’s Tears was nestled deep within the Aloe clump. Never would have eliminated all of it without pulling the Aloe apart.

Blue Angels

Blue Angels

BTW, it was a noisy weekend gardening. See up in the sky there? Those aren’t birds…they’re The Blue Angles. All day they were buzzing the skies. It’s really creepy hearing the deafening roar of fighter jets overhead. Every year about this time, they put on an airplane show down in Fisherman’s Wharf for Fleet Week. William M Briggs has a good post about the event.

After the replanting.

After the replanting.

In the ended, I replanted three Aloe rosettes in the same spot. The rest are being saved for another project we hope to pull off this weekend. I have my fingers crossed; wish me luck that all the Tears have gone away.

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– Far Out Flora


  1. I’d bet the aloe is Aloe saponaria. It really spreads! Love your succulent collection.

  2. no, i’m sure its not saponaria. more like nobilis.

    • Lol, I was thinking you were referring to the Baby’s Tears species. Nobiles seems likely as we always wanted one. Probably picked up one during a plant buying spree.

  3. Crossing my fingers. I think I have some planted but don’t have a problem because of how hot it gets. Hey that aloe looks a lot like minibelle. What do you think?

  4. The best way (sometimes the only way) to ID Aloes is by the flower. There are lots and lots of hybrids floating around out there. Looks very similar to Aloe x nobilis, which is actually a hybrid of uncertain parentage (See the San Marcos website for the story).

    I have that Soleirolia problem myself, and I’ll be surprised if you have really gotten rid of it. It seems to be able to come back with a vengeance from a single cell. :(

  5. Glad you posted this! I just put some Baby Tears in a container, to be grown indoors. It looks so innocent in the little pot *but* it’s already sending roots down & shooters out. I’ve dealt with invasive plants in my garden & can relate to completely hating them.. So good luck with yours!

  6. The curse of Corsica…baby’s tears! But it is so cute and pretty when it’s green & happy and not invading your luscious succulents.

  7. if you have an invasive plant, such as your baby tears or mint, just plant it in a planter and then plant the planter in the ground. And no more worry about it spreading!

  8. I think it might be aloe brevifolia.
    I have one that looks like it.

  9. I checked out your website because it came up in my search for getting rid of Baby’s Tears. Great photos! I love the contrasts.

    Baby’s Tears is a monster plant if you are trying to grow anything low. Nothing gets rid of it. You did well to carefully root it out, but it can come back from little bits, so be careful!! The Dave’s Garden website has interesting posts about it. Many people loooooove it! But I say probably most of these have had it in their garden only a few years. Just wait!

  10. beautiful gargen! thanks for sharing

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