Sunday, March 15, 2009

Kaffir Lily (Clivia miniata)

Clivia miniata

It's both Green Thumb Sunday and Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day. Oh, and the Ides of March, too. What a day! I haven't ventured outside just yet, to see what's blooming out there. I expect to find the first blooms of crocus and perhaps the primrose has opened up, but inside, there is plenty. Numerous amaryllis are still providing vibrant color, the Streptocarpella is still in bloom, and of course, the orchids. But there's a new girl in town.

Yesterday, I attended a continuing education class on ethics and jurisprudence, as required for my license renewal to practice dental hygiene in the state of Indiana. This was part of the total 14 hours I need, and while I've got more than that already for this licensing period, I still have one more required class to take before I'll be finished - CPR. I'll get that one before the year is over.

On the way home, I stopped at Meijer to see what they were offering in the way of spring flowers. They generally have something that's a little out of the ordinary and I wasn't disappointed.

As I walked through the front door, I think my jaw probably dropped open when I saw a large display of Clivia miniata, in all its orange goodness right there, before God and everybody.
It didn't take me long to pick one out. I found one that had a second flower stalk coming up, so I grabbed that one and checked out.

I'd been wanting a Clivia for some time now. Mom had one a couple of years ago - hers was yellow - and I'd seen them several times at the botanical conservatory in Ft. Wayne. Now I have one of my very own, and as everyone knows, I really needed another houseplant.

Clivia miniata

Origin: South Africa
Zone: 9-11
Clivias require soil that drains freely, as these plants like it on the dry side. A mix that includes bark will work well. They like to be pot bound and only require repotting about every 3-5 years.
During its winter rest period, keep the plant fairly dry. When growing period resumes in the spring, water thoroughly when the soil has become dry, then let it dry between waterings. Misting of the leaves is not recommended.
No direct sunlight. They grow well inside with a northern exposure, or anywhere that receives bright light without direct exposure to sun. Outside, place in a shaded area.

Clivias are known as a tough and easy houseplant, if you don't overwater it. During the winter, keep it fairly dry in a cool room (50-65°F) for about three months. You must do this to trigger blooming, which follows the rest period. Fertilize monthly with a half-strength 20-20-20 fertilizer during the growth period until September.

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Unknown said...

Nothing blooming outside at my place, Kylee, and I don't have a clivia, but I sure am happy to see yours in such radiant bloom!

Cathy S. said...

Love the bold orange color of Clivias, Nice photo shot.

Kylee Baumle said...

Jodi ~ I hope the snow is at least gone!

Cathy ~ Thanks! :-)

JulenaJo said...

I saw them at Krogers here and didn't buy one although I was sorely tempted. My luck with houseplants is dismal, to say the least. Maybe if they mark them down I'll pick one up. Gorgeous plant!

Kylee Baumle said...

JulenaJo ~ I love how some of the more obscure plants (at least here) are becoming more and more obtainable on a local level, and at affordable prices. And it sounds like your Kroger is much like ours - they are carrying some pretty nice stuff!

TC said...

Sometimes I think I need more houseplants, until it comes time to water what I have. (I don't see a floor protector under your pot Ms. Kylee.)

Kylee Baumle said...

TC ~ That was just a bit of sarcasm, because I have 175+ houseplants. LOL.

There is no floor protector because that pot has no holes. The Clivia is in an inner pot that does. When I water it, I will take it to the sink, water it thoroughly, letting the water drain through the holes, then return it to its outer pot. :-)

Kit Aerie-el said...

Beautiful plant! My cats would love it. :)

Gail said...

it's lovely...and aren't you lucky to find one with with buds ready to continue blooming in all its goodness! I do like that orange! gail

Janet, The Queen of Seaford said...

Think I have watering mine too much this winter. Bummer. It is so pot bound and I REALLY need to divide it and replant into about 4 containers. I will have to remember to go light on the watering in the winter. I do like clivias.

Kerri said...

They are beautiful, aren't they? A friend gave me one last summer because she needed to get rid of some of her plants. She said they're related to Amaryllis. Mine is looking healthy in a cool room upstairs but no bloom stalks yet. Thanks for the care info.

Rob (ourfrenchgarden) said...

Hi Kylee

They're beautiful aren't they.

The French really like them. Funnily enough, I see them outside at my local builders merchant!

This is France of course. The same builders merchant who also sells wine.


Bob said...

Glad you featured a great plant. I grew up with these as a outdoor plant but they really do well indoors too. I had a previous boss that had a huge one she kept indoor that was at least 2 feet across at the soil leave.

I'm back to posting again,
All the best, Bob

Anonymous said...

I've grown these as annuals in my garden Kylee. They are really pretty plants.

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

Good find! One of the secretaries where I used to work brought in a Clivia. It was so neat to watch it bloom. It's too bad I don't like orange. The yellow-flowered form of Clivia is outrageously expensive.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I can see why your heart was captured by this Clivia Kylee. It is gorgeous.

Anonymous said...

That first photo of the Clivia is outstanding! I've lusted after these for a while now too but so far haven't given in to temptation. I think your house is the perfect place for one to find a home ~ you seem to have a green thumb for houseplants. Enjoy your new girl and Happy Bloom Day.

Anonymous said...

I saw those same clivia at my local Meijer, gorgeous! I truly think I've run out of room for huge showy houseplants, so it didn't jump into my cart this time.

Corner Gardener Sue said...

That's a pretty plant! That was smart to find one with another stalk coming up. I always pick the one with the most buds, rather than the most flowers.

Kylee Baumle said...

Aerie-el ~ I wonder if my grass-eaters will chew on this one. So far so good!

Gail ~ I always look for unopened buds when I buy plants. I got lucky finding this one, I think! It was the only one like that.

Janet ~ From what I've read, they like to be pot bound, but I'm sure eventually they need to be repotted. I also read to only go up one pot size (no more than two inches bigger) when repotting.

Kerri~ Want to hear something crazy? My mom had a yellow one that she got at a Smith & Hawken store on clearance, but she still paid quite a bit for it. It never bloomed for her, so she gave it to me to see if I could get it to bloom. I put it in an unheated bedroom for the winter, then ended up giving it back to her. She gave it to someone else right away and it bloomed shortly after that. Go figure. Wish I had that one now!

Rob ~ It's funny how some plants are common in some places and not at all in others!

Bob ~ Look who's here!! :-) Good to see you! The Clivia is very new to me, so we shall see how I do with it.

Racquel ~ Wow...annuals? You let them die? Aren't they expensive for that? Or are they not so much where you are?

Mr. McGregor's Daughter ~ I'm not an orange lover either, but Clivias are cool. Just last week, I ordered a yellow one from They had a sale on some of their fragrant bulbs and this was included. It's less than I paid for this one ($20). Probably much smaller, too, but still. I know my mom paid more than that for her yellow one. If I remember right, it was something like $35, on sale. It was a rather large one though. We'll see how the yellow one does when I get it in April.

Lisa ~ I just couldn't resist!

Kathleen ~ Give in! LOL. Well, we shall see how I do with it!

Robin ~ I don't really have room for it either, but oh well! LOL!

Sue ~ That's what I try to do, too. More bang for the buck! ;-)

EAL said...

I do hear that clivias are easy to take care of. I also think they like to be outside in the summer. I've been wanting one for a while as well, and maybe will get one from B&B this spring.

Phillip Oliver said...

I would love to have another clivia. I used to have one but it died on me. I don't think I knew how to properly care for it.

Roses and Lilacs said...

Beautiful, that would certainly brighten up any room. I've never tried growing one.

healingmagichands said...

So, now I am happy I am in Missouri. We have daffodils already, and peas up. On the other hand, it gets darned hot here in August.

Shady Gardener said...

Very Pretty! :-)

Muum said...

love your Clivia. I have one that hasn't bloomed yet, will have to try some of your ideas and see if I can have some success.

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