Ask a Question forum: Clivia plant

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Feb 20, 2017 9:08 AM CST
Our Clivia plant is very old and very dear to us. We brought her to FL from CT and for the first year, she did very well..bloomed a few times, was healthy as could be. This month, it appears she rotting at her roots and her leaves are drooping instead of being strong and upright. We see ants and small gnats on her. Can someone point us to a treatment to help her recover?
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Name: June
Rosemont, Ont. (Zone 4a)
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Feb 20, 2017 9:35 AM CST
Hi @donnajoann031996 Welcome! It sounds as if the problem is in the soil - maybe being kept too wet, invaded by an ant nest, or colonized by fungus gnats - so I would suggest you un-pot the plant, remove any obviously rotted roots, and re-pot it using fresh soil that is fast-draining.
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
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Feb 20, 2017 10:12 AM CST
Good advice from June there, Donna. Yes, too wet in the winter could cause these problems and good drainage in the pot is essential.

May I add that if you are growing your Clivia outdoors in Florida, (and you should) you need to let it have a cool dry dormant period in the winter. For me this means I have to move the pot to a shady place that is under the roof overhang so it doesn't get any rain. Mine gets no water at all for most of January and February. These plants store a lot of water in their fat roots, so they do just fine with this treatment and bloom much better once it warms up and you bring it out of dormancy again.


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Name: Anne
Summerville, SC (Zone 8a)
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Feb 20, 2017 10:14 AM CST
Hi Donna and welcome to NGA!

June is right .. Clivia does NOT like wet feet. When you repot, clean off each bulb and check for rot and cut off any dead roots - if you find rot on the bulbs take a very sharp knife and shave it off until it's totally gone - don't be taking off big chumks. When you pot it back up, do NOT water it unless the soil you use is totally dry. If the soil is totally dry then you're better off wetting the soil to where it's on the dry side of moist then pot up.
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