How deep to plant clivia

Clivia, Clivie, belt blade - care instructions and overwintering

The belt blade is one of the best-known and most widespread indoor plants. Nevertheless, the popular ornamental plant demands a lot of care and care from its keepers. Under ideal conditions and when all needs are met, the robust, South African amaryllis will develop knight star-like flowers from the end of January. The variety of colors varies, from bright red to pale pink. As robust as the Clivia may be, in order to enjoy the distinctive flowers, many factors have to be taken into account.


The ideal location

Clivia minata is very demanding when it comes to choosing the optimal location. For example, places that are too dark and shady are out of the question for the South African plant. The belt blade needs a few hours of sunshine a day, choose a light, east or west-facing window seat for the plant.

Immediately after flowering in May, you can move the belt blade to a sheltered place on the balcony or terrace. To prevent burns of the dark green leaves, however, you should keep away from a place with direct and long exposure to sunlight.

The clivia is unable to regenerate this damage and the affected parts of the plant die off. Between February and May the amaryllis family develops its impressively bright flowers. To a change of location during this time, the belt blade often reacts with premature shedding of the inflorescences.

Watering and fertilizing

The South African plant is extremely sensitive to waterlogging, but the root ball must not dry out completely. Every time you repot, a layer of potsherds or lava chippings should form the basis of the bottom of the pot so that excess water can drain away unhindered. Water about two to three times a week in the warm summer months. During the vegetation break only supply moderately with lime-free, lukewarm water.

Especially during the flowering period, the Clivia needs a lot of nutrients to fully develop its glowing inflorescences. Just before the flowering time in February, start feeding the plant with conventional liquid fertilizer every 14 days. For an even distribution in the substrate, it is advisable to add the fertilizer directly to the irrigation water. From July onwards, the supply of nutrients can be expanded to once a month, but it can be completely stopped by the end of September at the latest.

Note: Fertilizing during the break leads to an unwanted oversupply of nutrients.


When it comes to “winter rest”, the Clivia miniata takes it very carefully. For the regular development of the distinctive flowers, the belt blade needs several months of rest.

  • Reduce pouring to a minimum.
  • Completely stop the supply of nutrients.
  • The temperature should be between 8 and 12 ° C.
  • Avoid dry heating air.
  • A light location is necessary.

The rest period begins in October and ends in January at the latest. The first inflorescences often form from this point in time. Slowly get the Clivie used to normal room temperatures and water the plant regularly.


As soon as the fleshy roots of the plant protrude visibly and increasingly from the planter, it must be repotted. This condition is reached about every three to four years, and it is not advisable to move the plant prematurely.

  • Choose a humus-rich substrate or mix large amounts of compost with conventional potting soil.
  • The new planter must be a few centimeters larger. In order to better withstand the strong growth of the Clivia, heavy pots made of clay have proven themselves.
  • Place a drain at the bottom of the jar. This will prevent waterlogging and the formation of root rot.
  • Carefully remove the old substrate from the plant. Be careful not to damage the fleshy roots.
  • Do not fill the fresh soil completely up to the rim of the container.

During this action, the shoots growing laterally out of the root ball can be used to multiply the plant.

Note: A narrow planter promotes flower formation. Therefore, repot seldom.

Avoid care mistakes

The evergreen houseplant is extremely demanding, incorrect keeping conditions can quickly affect the amaryllis plant.

Leaves fade and become wrinkled 
An indication that too much or too little has been poured. Check the substrate and water immediately if it has dried out. Immerse the pot up to the brim in a tub of lime-free water and repeat this process one or two times.

If it has been poured over, you should immediately transfer the belt blade to dry earth. Carefully loosen the plant from the container so as not to damage the roots. The South African Clivia can withstand short-term drought better than excessive amounts of water. You should therefore water regularly, but in moderation.

Leaves take on a yellowish color
The plant is getting too much sunlight. Clivia miniata needs a bright location, but it must be protected from direct sunlight. Immediately move the belt blade and remove the affected parts of the plant. This stimulates the plant to sprout new leaves. A few hours of sunshine in the early morning or evening, however, do not damage the South African amaryllis family.
The supply of very calcareous water also causes the leaves to turn yellow. Therefore, always use stale rainwater for watering.

Putrid smell penetrates the substrate
A sure sign of root rot. This fungal disease caused by waterlogging attacks the roots and can quickly lead to the death of the plant. There are no effective remedies against root rot, as a preventive measure you can only avoid waterlogging. Immediately transfer the affected belt blade to dry earth. If the entire root ball has not yet been infected by the fungus, the plant often recovers. In addition to a drainage layer, you can also use small amounts of sand to make the substrate more permeable to water.

Problems with flowering

The plant is extremely sensitive to any kind of change and very often the flowers do not develop because of this.

Change of location 
You shouldn't move the planter from December to May. Even turning the pot can cause the belt blade to throw off the flowers or not to develop them in the first place. However, immediately after flowering in May, you can cultivate the plant as usual on the terrace or balcony.

Incorrect pouring behavior
The Clivia is also very resentful of "feet" that are too wet or too dry. Water regularly and only reduce the water supply during the months of rest.

Nutritional deficiency
The evergreen plant needs a lot of nutrients during the flowering period. Fertilize every 14 days with normal liquid fertilizer or use a long-term fertilizer.

A planter that is too narrow does not disturb the belt blade. Only when the substrate is completely penetrated by the roots does it need to be repotted. Repot immediately after the flowering period, so that the plant still has enough strength for the new flowers to form in the following year. Do not damage any of the fleshy roots when moving them to the new flower pot. Often this is the reason why the clivia does not bloom.

Lack of light 
Long-lasting and direct sunlight is just as badly tolerated by the belt blade as places that are too dark. Even if you only choose a location that is too shady in summer, the amaryllis will resent you until the flowering period. Always ensure optimal conditions and treat the South African beauty to sun protection in places that are too sunny.

Belt leaves pulled or split from seeds take two to three years before the first inflorescences appear.

Resting phase 
The vegetation break is between October and January. During this time, the amaryllis plant needs temperatures of a maximum of 12 ° C and should only be watered moderately. If this rest period is omitted, the Clivia does not develop any flowers. Choose a bright location as early as September where the plant can spend undisturbed until May. From January you can slowly raise the temperature and supply the belt blade with water and nutrients as usual. Under optimal conditions, older plants can bloom twice a year.

Note: Clivia miniata causes symptoms of poisoning in dogs and cats.


Diseases are hardly known in the robust, South African plant. More frequent, however, is the infestation of damaged insects, which cause considerable problems for the belt blade through sucking and stinging.

Spider mites
Dry air and warm temperatures encourage infestation with the eight-legged pests. These are particularly common in winter, when the plant is in close proximity to radiators. A cream-colored to silvery discoloration of the leaves is a visible indication of spider mites; the fine nets can be seen near the substrate with a water atomizer. If the spider mite infestation is not recognized or controlled in good time, the pests multiply in an uncontrolled manner and can cause considerable damage to the belt blade. Isolate the affected plant and resort to special insecticides.
For a short time, the Clivie can also tolerate an increase in humidity, which, however, kills the damaged arachnids. To do this, water the belt blade sufficiently and wrap the entire plant including the container with a transparent film. Maintain this condition for a few days and repeat if necessary.

A cotton-wool-like coating on the leaves and drive axes of the belt blade is a sign of mealybugs. These pests also tend to appear in winter quarters and cause brown discoloration on the leaves. While eating, the lice inject a substance into the inside of the plant, which poisons the belt blade from the inside out. To avoid overpopulation and infestation of neighboring plants, you should take immediate action against the mealybugs.

Wipe the plant with a mixture of alcohol and water every two to three days to completely remove the mealybugs. Chemical agents from specialist retailers often contain oily substances that should not come into contact with the Clivie. Avoid these insecticides as they clog the pores of the leaves and the chemical pesticides do more harm than good.

Note: Healthy plants are more resistant to pests. Therefore, pay attention to the correct care of the belt blade.
The belt leaf is a demanding houseplant which, if properly cared for, will regularly delight its keepers with bright flowers. You should therefore find out in detail about the right keeping conditions and the needs of the Clivie before buying.