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Author Topic: How to water a clivia correctly?  (Read 11649 times)

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How to water a clivia correctly?
« on: April 13, 2012, 22:06:07 »
We often have read that it is not good to overwater a clivia, as it will get rotten roots. The contrary seems to be as well very bad. On an internet side I found the following sentence: "Make sure that you will never let your clivia miniata dry."

This sentence astonishes me, as clivias are always said to be very drought-resistant.

What could after your opinion be the reasons for this hint?

Kind regards,
Elke


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Re: How to water a clivia correctly?
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2012, 22:42:00 »
I guess for optimal growth and performance, the plants are not suppose to kept too dry? I discovered that I have been just light watering my clivias and the roots at the bottom are not getting enough water and they show signs of it by having very skinny new growth. Since then I have watered thoroughly, still with good drainage of course, once a week and they looked happier especially the seedlings as they haven't got many roots to store water yet.


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Re: How to water a clivia correctly?
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2012, 22:44:25 »
Elke i think this is one of the most controverisial topics around.

Some people say never get water into the crown. Lately i have been visiting a lot of nurseries and they water their clivia plants daily with a hosepipe and the roots are as healthy as can be. Stef put in his shadehouse post he overhead waters every 3 days for 30 minutes. I know Oom Mariens ( a SA breeder) overhead waters his plants and they are always damp.

I have one nobilis clump of clivia that has not seen water in 6 monts but is as happy as can be. I only spray water on their leaves once or twice a week.

Bill stated in one of his posts that he has weeds in some of his pots/bags and when the weeds starts dying then he knows it is time to water his plants. Other plants would have died long before the weeds die but the clivia plants keep on going.

My father has a massive clump of clivia in his garden under an avo tree and he does not believe in wasting water so they only get water when it rains but just keeps on multiplying. This year we did not have a lot of rain.

I pass a factory premisis on my way to work every day and every morning the sprayers are on. These clivia plants in their garden are massive and very healthy.

My opinion is taht clivia will adapt to the conditions that you give them. Water them daily and they will be happy. Water them weekly and they will be happy. Water them monthly and they will still be happy but dont water them daily and then change to monthly and then change back to daily. Stick to a routine watering frequency and they will survive.

Just my humble opinion.

Kind regards
Eddie
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Re: How to water a clivia correctly?
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2012, 01:48:18 »
Elke,
I agree with Eddie's comments. What I have found is that when I purchase mature plants they take around 3 to 4 months to settle and respond to my watering and feeding regime before they start to flourish.
Obviously drainage is the key to the frequency of watering.
With regards to watering overhead, I think of the photos I have seen of Clivia in their natural state. Most appear to grow under trees in shaded areas. These plants will mainly take water from the soil with an occassional overhead watering when it rains heavily and rain can penetrate through the leaf canopy. Depending on the weather I water once per week and water overhead every second watering. During exceptionally hot spells I may water twice weekly.
Best Regards
Darrall

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Re: How to water a clivia correctly?
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2012, 07:54:27 »
Dry roots shrivel and can crack ,this damage can be an invitation  to pathogens and cause root rot.

So when we I advise to  let the medium " Dry Out occasionally " to allow oxygen in , I mean that the medium should be
allowed to become damp , not saturated . NEVER LET THE ROOTS DRY OUT COMPLETELY!

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Re: How to water a clivia correctly?
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2012, 11:47:08 »
Water is not the problem , overwatering is not the problem

It is the growing medium that is the problem.

Here is a couple of plants that i nearly lost cause of rootrot

I saved them in water.

First  plants in water and coconut hust , bowl filled up with water every day.

Second plant in clear water , changed every day.

Roots are 7 weeks old.
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Re: How to water a clivia correctly?
« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2012, 16:21:06 »
Thank you all very much for your interesting opinion!

Bill,
it could be nonsence, but when I see pictures of the wonderful roots of clivias in water I have the impression, that the plant is urgently searching some essential nutrients. But as there is only water, it builds more roots for this search.

Lionel,
I found in the depth of the forum some remarks of Heinie with regard to repotting clivias. Unfortunately he is no longer writing here. His comment punctuates your hint:

Dry roots shrivel and can crack ,this damage can be an invitation  to pathogens and cause root rot.

So when we I advise to  let the medium " Dry Out occasionally " to allow oxygen in , I mean that the medium should be
allowed to become damp , not saturated . NEVER LET THE ROOTS DRY OUT COMPLETELY!


?
I find that many growers really over stretch the watering cycles of their Clivia because they can survive dry conditions very well. By doing so the advantage taken from these plants is really under watering them because they can withstand drought conditions so well. This is when the roots start to dry out and shrink and it cannot always take up water sufficiently because the root had dried out too much. These are the roots that ?die? due to our fault and the plant leans over and it will never correct itself to a vertical position again. Hence the reason I use a good draining medium and water often. These are once again my opinions learnt from my little experience in the garden.
?..


This hint ?NEVER LET THE ROOTS DRY OUT COMPLETELY!? seems to be important in winter, too, as I wrote on a Germany forum that a lot of clivia lovers do not water their clivias for several months until they see the umbel, when the clivias are in their frost-free and rain-free winter quarters. I have watered them about once a months with very little water, so that the roots did not dry out.

Kind regards,
Elke

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Re: How to water a clivia correctly?
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2013, 22:55:54 »
Now something really puzzles me, you hear about starving the plant of water over winter months. But here in Cape Town we get winter rain so this is not possible... Im sure many of you have seen some of the flowers down here.. They flower no problem at all anyone have any insight???

Its true about the plants getting to dry, last year I was working in stellenbosch for 6 months so was not able to see to my plants they were not watered reguarly enough they started all leaning over thought it was my new medium but i now know that the roots dried out and set my plants back a long way taken them 5 months to start coming rite again




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Re: How to water a clivia correctly?
« Reply #8 on: June 06, 2013, 01:54:21 »
I grow almost all of my plants in wet condition by sitting the flower pot in a container filled with shallow water. This 8-year-old Monk plant with blushed yellow flowers has been sitting a container filled with shallow water for 4 years without any signs of root problem. It has flowered and set seeds for many years.
I only let the water in the container dry completely occasionally and then filled it with shallow water again after 1 week without water in it. The key is that the growing medium should be very porous. I use coconut husk chips as main growing medium, which are very porous and has good drainage. I only repot my plants once every 2-3 years. In China, most commercial growers will repot their plants twice a year if they use rotted oak tree leaves as main growing medium 
If there is a lot of air in the growing medium, water will not be a problem for the healthy growth of root system.  By using this method, it is very simple to judge when to water your plants. Photo taken just now.
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