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Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column bragging about the medicinal, succulent green plant growing in our home.

We use it as a low-maintenance herbal remedy to many of life’s pains, especially sunburn. But aloe vera’s benefits are debatable.

The plant’s properties may help with healing burns and abrasions:

They are proven to prevent healing of deep surgical wounds, according to the National Institute of Health.

Aloe vera has also been known ” or rumored ” to treat diabetes, asthma and epilepsy.

The plant is a frequent ingredient in cosmetics and soaps, though the benefit it offers as a soothing moisturizer is uncertain.

There is but one indisputable benefit of the plant ” it is an effective laxative, according to NIH.

For now, we’ll take the government’s word on this and refrain from dumping it on our eggs.

We picked up our plant a couple weeks ago for $5 at the grocery store. It had about four leaves; now it has seven, maybe more.

We really wanted a Labrador ” or maybe a Sugar Glider ” but the lease on our mountain condo prohibits pets.

So we selected an alternative that could offer similar joy, albeit a bit less companionship.

It appears happy. It doesn’t ask for much.

They say talking to plants helps them grow. We’ve tried that a couple times, but it’s hard to know what to say.

We almost bought a colorful geranium for our porch.

That way, maybe we could see some bees and hummingbirds.

But it would have died when the weather cooled.

So our lone aloe plant sits in a little plastic cup on the kitchen sink.

It may not be itching to go for a walk, but at least it won’t die if we forget about it for a week.

And despite the scientific uncertainties, we’ll keep using its juices to treat sunburns. Apparently we’re not the only aloe vera fans.

There’s a group called the International Aloe Science Council that includes many PhD’s, growers, insurance companies and manufacturers who sell everything from aloe-containing skin-care products to beverages.

Their common bond is the promotion of aloe vera.

They have a non-discriminatory code of ethics and their constant vigilance as a watchdog monitors potential threats to the aloe industry, according to their website.


It’s Thursday, and we’re out shopping for a Venus fly trap to ward off threats to our aloe vera.

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