Aloe is a genus of over 400 species of flowering succulent plants. The most well known is aloe vera, or "True Aloe". Aloes are known to hybridize easily, resulting in the large number of species and available cultivars.
Aloe is native to Africa - especially South Africa, neighboring areas, and Arabia.
Most aloes have a 'rosette' of thick fleshy leaves. These are typically pointed, resembling lances with spiny margins. Some have stems, but many do not appear to have a stem with the rosette growing at ground level.
Aloes are often grown as ornamental plants. A gel extracted from Aloe vera leaves can be made into a skin cream that has therapeutic properties - e.g. helping to heal and soothe sunburn and eczema. Aloe extracts can also have laxative effects and have historically been used as purgatives, but this use has now been banned from over-the-counter products by the US's Food and Drug Administration.
Use this tag for all questions about growing the various Aloe plants, including Aloe vera.