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The decorative clivia, which belongs to the amaryllis family and originally comes from southern Africa, is known as a houseplant in the local latitudes. Nevertheless, it has to be overwintered so that it can train its beautiful flowers again every year. Her flowering period usually begins in late winter and she delights her owners with her beautiful splendor well into June. The older it gets, the more beautiful it blooms with the right care.


Proper hibernation of the houseplant is important so that it can show its decorative flowers in full splendor again next year from February. Although it is a flowering plant that is not usually cultivated outdoors, it still needs special care in winter. These include, above all, the rest period, the right location and the right temperature.

rest time

The rest period of at least two months, preferably four months, should definitely be observed over the winter period. This is the only way for the plant to bloom again at the end of winter. Although it has decorative leaves that would beautify an apartment even in winter, if the clivia remains in its normal, mostly warm location even in winter, then this is at the expense of the flower. Even during the dormant period, the plant needs a little care, which should be as follows.

  • Keep soil slightly moist
  • not too wet
  • Avoid waterlogging
  • regularly wipe long leaves with a damp cloth

This allows the plant to absorb moisture through the leaves, while at the same time removing dust that could make it difficult for the clivia to absorb oxygen and moisture through the leaves.


After flowering, which ends between May and June, the clivia can be placed outside until winter preparation. Preparations for overwintering should then begin in October so that the plant can bloom again in late winter.

This is done as follows:

  • Bring Clivie in from the outdoors
  • Fertilizer is discontinued
  • only give a little water

To cut

The right cut is also part of preparing for the winter. When the flowers wither, they should be removed. To do this, they can simply be snapped off by hand. The stalk is then cut directly at the base with a sharp and disinfected knife when this is also yellowed. The clivia draws its nutrients for the next winter and the dormant phase from the yellowed stalks. The green leaves remain on the plant. On the other hand, if the flowers are not removed early enough, all the effort is put into producing fruit, wasting the energy needed for the next bloom in late winter.


The clivia needs a suitable location for hibernation and the rest period, which also offers the right temperatures. In addition, it should be light despite the resting phase, since the evergreen plant keeps its long, decorative leaves even in winter and therefore needs enough light. Above all, the Clivie must never be placed in a place where it will be “forgotten” for the near future when it is resting. So the ideal location for hibernation should look like this.

  • unheated conservatory
  • bright, frost-free garage
  • bright, frost-free garden house
  • unheated staircase at a window
  • unheated bedroom on windowsill
  • Storage room with window

If it is too dark at the location, an LED light can also be switched on during the day to provide the plant with the brightness it needs. LED lights have the advantage of not drawing much current and can therefore be left on all day without incurring high costs. However, care should be taken to ensure that the light used does not radiate heat directly towards the clivia. This heat could be harmful in winter quarters if it exceeds the desired temperature.


The right temperature in the winter quarters is also important so that the clivia can unfold its graceful blooms in full splendor in February. So you should pay attention to the following temperatures from the preparation time until the onset of the first flowering.

  • 10°- 12° Celsius for at least two months
  • four months at these temperatures is ideal
  • from October to January
  • Temperatures should be stable

If it gets too warm at a chosen location too early, for example in December, then the clivia should be moved to a cooler, but still bright place.

After hibernation

After hibernation

At the end of January, the first inflorescences form between the long leaves directly on the bulb. Now the clivia should slowly get used to warmer temperatures again. A heat lamp in the winter quarters or a small fan heater can ensure that the room slowly gets warmer. However, a quick change of location from the cool temperatures at the winter location to warm temperatures in a heated living room should be avoided. Only when the clivia has been constantly exposed to warmer temperatures can the decorative flower move to its original location in the apartment, for example on a west or east window in the living room. When acclimating after wintering, the clivia needs the following care above all.

  • increased watering again
  • start fertilizing
  • regular liquid fertilizer for flowering plants
  • usually every two weeks with the irrigation water
  • watch out for sunlight
  • Leaves could get sunburned

Since the clivia belongs to the amaryllis family, it can also be given a special fertilizer for amaryllis from well-stocked specialist shops to support flowering. For the application, attention should be paid to the manufacturer's instructions.

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