Botanic Gardens Trust, Sydney, Australia

Clivia miniata

The Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney - August

Common name bush lily
Scientific name Clivia miniata (Lindl.) Bosse
Family  Amaryllidaceae

Genus: Clivea named for the Duchess of Northumberland, nee Clive. Died 1866.

Species: miniata - cinnabar red -referring to the bright flowers

Distribution Natal Province, South Africa
Native habitat Grows in warm, dry forest habitats in dappled shade.

Clump-forming perennial, with fleshy underground stem and roots. Leaves strap-shaped, to 60 cm long x 3-7 cm wide.

Inflorescence 12- 20 flowered. Flowers erect to spreading, on pedicels 2.5 - 5 cm long, the corolla tube broadly funnel-shaped, to 13 mm long, bright orange-scarlet  with yellow throat, or occasionally all yellow; anthers to 4 mm long.

Fruit  globose to ovoid, bright red.

Flowering/fruiting Flowering spring to early summer. In Sydney August to October.

Location in Garden

Growing in the Palm Grove. Extensively planted as a border plant in beds 23, 25, 26, 27, 28a and 28b.
Click here for map of garden beds & grid.


Clivia miniata has been a significant part of the planting in the Palm Grove for over 50 years.

It is a much sought after plant in horticulture as it has lovely deep green foliage and bright, cheery flowers and because it grows in light shade.

Easily propagated from seed or division.

Susceptible to frost.

The rhizome is reported to be poisonous but has been used as a snakebite remedy  by the Zulu people. Also used to facilitate delivery at childbirth or to initiate parturition when its onset is retarded.

Clivia miniata is not known to be weedy.

The plant is available from the Growing Friends.