Live to Plant

Why Your Clivia Plant Is Growing Sideways

Updated: April 16, 2022

Clivia plants are a popular houseplant known for their beautiful orange or yellow blooms. They are easy to care for and can thrive in a variety of conditions. However, one issue that clivia plant owners may encounter is their plant growing sideways instead of upright. This can be frustrating and can also affect the health and appearance of the plant. In this article, we will explore the reasons why your clivia plant may be growing sideways and what you can do to fix it.

Lack of Light

One of the most common reasons why clivia plants grow sideways is due to a lack of light. Clivia plants require bright, indirect light to thrive. If they are not receiving enough light, they may begin to grow towards the direction of the light source. This can cause the plant to grow sideways or even bend over completely.

To avoid this problem, make sure your clivia plant is placed in a location that receives plenty of bright, indirect light. You may need to move the plant around your home until you find the perfect spot.


Overwatering is another common issue that can cause clivia plants to grow sideways. When a plant is overwatered, the soil becomes waterlogged and can cause root rot. This can weaken the roots and cause them to grow in strange directions, including sideways.

To avoid overwatering your clivia plant, make sure you are only watering it when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch. Use a well-draining potting mix and ensure that there are drainage holes at the bottom of the pot.

Pot Bound

Clivia plants prefer to be slightly pot-bound, meaning that their roots like to be slightly cramped in their container. However, if your clivia has been in the same pot for several years, it may be time to repot it into a larger container. If the plant is too cramped in its current pot, it may begin to grow sideways as it searches for more space.

When repotting your clivia plant, choose a pot that is only slightly larger than its current container. Use a well-draining potting mix and ensure that there are drainage holes at the bottom of the pot.

Pest Infestation

Pest infestations can also cause clivia plants to grow sideways. Pests such as spider mites and mealybugs can weaken the plant and cause it to grow in strange directions. If you notice any signs of pest infestation, such as yellowing leaves or webbing, take action immediately to eliminate the pests.

Use an insecticidal soap or neem oil to treat the infestation. You may need to repeat the treatment several times to completely eliminate the pests.

Lack of Nutrients

Finally, clivia plants that are not receiving enough nutrients may begin to grow sideways. Make sure you are fertilizing your clivia plant regularly with a balanced fertilizer. Follow the instructions on the fertilizer package for the best results.


Can I trim the leaves of my clivia plant to encourage upright growth?

No, it is not recommended to trim the leaves of your clivia plant as this can weaken the plant and affect its ability to photosynthesize.

Should I stake my clivia plant if it is growing sideways?

Yes, staking your clivia plant can help encourage upright growth. Use a bamboo stake or similar material to gently support the plant.

Can I propagate my clivia plant if it is growing sideways?

Yes, you can propagate your clivia plant by dividing its rhizomes. Wait until spring or early summer when the plant is actively growing before dividing it. Make sure each division has at least three leaves and a healthy root system before planting it in a new container.

In conclusion, clivia plants are beautiful and easy-to-care for houseplants. However, if your plant is growing sideways, it may be a sign of an underlying issue such as a lack of light, overwatering, pot-bound roots, pest infestation or lack of nutrients. By identifying the cause of the problem and taking appropriate action, you can help your clivia plant grow upright and thrive.