diff. repotting question & flowering question

littlem_2007June 14, 2008

hello, everyone, my clivia has 3 babies attached to it and there so many roots that it has pushed the plant up and the top 2 inches of the root system is actually above the pot. should the roots be covered by dirt or is it OK this way? to cover them, i would have to repot. also, this has not flowered for me. I had kept it in the basement under florescent lighting with my orchids and citrus. the temp was around 50-55F and i watered the clivia every lightly once a month. what else should i have done? thanks for your help.


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annebert(6b/7a MD)

I think the roots being exposed is ok, But the plant needs to experience temps BELOW 50 degrees for several weeks in order to flower. You probably need to leave it outside to accomplish this. If it is left outside during the summer, it will handle fall/winter temps down into mid-30s ok. Stop watering in early fall, and do not water at all during the winter.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2008 at 7:11PM
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hello, annebert, happy new year.. i am sorry i did not see your response till now... thanks for your response. it did decide to flower now but the flower buds are between the leaves and there is no stem. how do you get it to elongate? TIA

    Bookmark   January 6, 2009 at 11:06AM
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Hi annbert,
I think that the process you suggested might work for some and even worked for you. In fact I know some that do this and get results. I think the shock of it all is what pushes the plant to flower. This can work.
But I also think there are other methods one can try too.
With mine,
I have to say that I have had several of my clivia flower for me in temps held over 60 degrees in the winter in my basement. I have no where that gets that cold for mine, unless they are in an unheated garage which can freeze.
For me, it was the amount of light I gave them and lack of water that triggered flowering. I am begining to think that these plants need a shock, whether it is a withdrawel of light, less water, not to be confused with absolutley NO water, or cooler temps, or all 3 to flower.
Reminds me of my Christmass cactus. I have 3.
They all flowered. One I gave less light too in a warm room, one I forgot outside and suffer cold temps, and another I forgot to water too almost death, and all had beautiful blooms. I was told only cold temps triggered flowers for these. Not so.:-)
For me, with regards to said plant, clivia, it was lack of water and lack of light that flowered mine, not cold...hum.
I cut back to 6 hours of light in my basement, and by winters end had several bud last year. When I gave more light to early, the buds started to open in the leaf stem. When I cut back to 6 hours of light again, the flower stem elongated more, although it was to late to stop the buds from opening.
For me, cold temps had nothing to do for mine, although this can also be a contributor to flowering too, for some. Maybe cooler than summer temps?
Try any of these methods for producing buds, and I think you will aquire them.
I don't think that these plants in their natural habitat have weeks on end of temps below what you suggest.

To elongate the flower stem, for me, it was a must for them to recieve little light until the aquired length you want to attain. I think in nature, outdoors in warmer climates, these plants can sense light changes, water changes in the weather pattern, and even temp changes in which all of these trigger bud formation in these plants all over the world.
This I have been told by clivia experts,
You have to give a little water during winter to keep roots hydrated and healthy, or the roots will dehydrate beyond the point of being able to take up water, which will start the root rot process when water is finally introduced.. That is of course if you are living in an area where the winters are long and not short as like the south. In fact these plants are rained upon in natural habitat in dormancy cycle.
Therefore yellowing leaf and root problems from no water at all, all winter for such a LONG period of time ='s death.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2009 at 6:58PM
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Hey Meyermike, Looks like you are in Michigan. I'm near Detroit.

I need help, I'm getting close to getting rid of all my Clivia plants. For several years I half heartedly tried to get my Clivias to bloom. Then last fall I followed the directions too the letter. Not a single bloom.

In summer I keep my Clivias on the front porch, facing east, partially shaded. The Rubber Plant thrives there, and the Clivias look very healthy. I stopped watering the clivia in August, kept them on the porch till the end of October. Had to cover them once or twice when the temp. dipped too low. They couldn't have been getting too much sunlight on the porch in Oct. I brought them inside, watered and waited. Some by a west facing window under the Rubber Plant. Some in the basement, gathered around the small south facing window. Still no blooms.

What am I doing wrong?


    Bookmark   February 19, 2009 at 6:09AM
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hello, Mike, thank you for your detailed advice. you gave me info re elongating the stem: I followed it and it did grow another 3 inches. right now it is in full bloom. i have kept it in the sunroom: the temp. is about 50F.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2009 at 4:34PM
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Wonderful. Awsome. Wish you could post a pic so we can all share in its beauty!;-)

toomanyanimals, I like your name. What kind of animals do you have? Are you trying to tell us something? lol

I would make a specific plea to craig. He does AWSOME with his. I would ask him what his secret is. He definately has a magic finger. Have you seen his flowers? Coulb ne fertilizer related too.
Are you giving them a consistant dark period? Over lets say, 3 months? Or a consistant cool period? And you are not overwatering right? They are to be watered very lttle. Sometimes I wonder if it's dormancy that causes them to bloom, or stressing them out.
Which ever one it is, you need to do it, and maybe someone here can help. For me, as I explained above, it works. I also live in a cold region as you.
In fact, I have a friend who puts them in her cellar too under florescent lights. She has them in her cool dark basement. Put aonly 3 hours of light on them starting in Oct. Then has the lights up to 6-8 by March. EVERYONE of them flower profusely! She is the one I learned from. Hers never fail to bloom. Some are 50 years old, along with young ones. Amazing! Long stocks and lots of flowers by March.
Please don't rid them, just try different techniques for each one, and see what works. You have alot of support, help,and ideas here. Don't give up!:-)

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 8:42AM
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I forgot to mention that she tells me she likes to keep them root bound and in the same pots for years. Seems like the ones that flower most for me are the ones undisturbed, in the same pot for a long time, and rootbound. Hum////

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 8:46AM
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Hi Mike,

You've touched on it all. Maturity is the best indicator for repeat flowering. Seed set can delay flowering for a year or two. They do go dormant during their dry winter period in nature. Mine are put into a forced dormancy (or just plain survival) for a couple hot weeks in summer. They still seem to grow a bit in winter, especially if I have them in some light. The truth is we don't really know how to get them to flwoer regulariy. They either do or don't. Lighting and moisture do seem to play a part. So do temps. It is way too complex for a mere human to figure out.

Right now I am using a peat/perlite mix. I add some fish emulsion a couple times a year and occassional use some dissolvable flower fertilizer. I water the mature plants about once a month, even when it is hot. If I water too much, fungus develops. You are better to keep them a bit dry instead of wet. You are obviously doing something right with your coco peat. I tried coir, and it was too wet.

Hopefully this helps


    Bookmark   March 6, 2009 at 5:20PM
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moogiemama(zone 5b-6a)

I hope I'm not intruding.... just a thought to help for flowering for those of you in warmer climate. I know of people in CA who water their "northern" plants with ice to keep the roots cooler. I would think some extra mulch and then some very cold water (or ice) in the fall would help. I don't need to do this since we go way below the minimum temps. But it might be interesting to see if this works for some of you struggling to make your clivia bloom.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2009 at 6:53PM
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hello, Mike, sorry i did not see this until now. Health issues in the family but all is well now. thanks for your interest. my son's camera has not been around much although he is occasionally so unfortunately no photos. the flowers lasted quite awhile - the last bloom is still hanging on. it had 16 blooms. the scape was on one of the younger growths. the oldest growth has a couple of yellowing leaves - it that normal? thanks again for sharing your knowledge and experience.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2009 at 9:28AM
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Hi, my clivia is blooming now since mid April in SC. Moved it outside when it started to bloom to lengthen the flower stalk. Moved here from NJ and before the move I repotted it into a smaller container. Left it outside until I brought in Cymbidium orchids that were placed against the house for some cold protection, withheld water for about a month in February and leaves turned yellow. After that started to water again on weekly basis and voila! I will try to get it to bloom again next year. I would love to have a diferent color, yellow or peach. Bought the plant several yrs ago in bloom at Lowe's and paid 19.99.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2009 at 1:35PM
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A quick update on my previous post is the second offshoot is also blooming! This is so great! I watched it careful but it shows a flower almost overnight! WHOO HOO!!

    Bookmark   May 4, 2009 at 3:40PM
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I am so happy for you tiarella!!
Isn't it exciting to see such beauty?
I hope your plants grows well through the summer too.
Don't foget to fertilize ok..

    Bookmark   May 11, 2009 at 7:51PM
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This is too funny. If you look at my post on magala's thread about the mystery of the non-blooming, you will see that I'm not following any of these directions, LOL!


    Bookmark   May 15, 2009 at 12:48PM
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