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By Harold Koopowitz

Clivias are classed among the most desirable of all connoisseur plants, offering not only spectacular flowers but also interesting variations in both leaf variegation and plant form. Despite their reputation as specialist plants, however, clivias are surprisingly easy to grow and tolerant of abuse. Koopowitz has written the first book to delightfully detail the genus Clivia. Beginning with the story of their discovery, he moves on to issues of cultivation, hybridization, and propagation. The bulk of his book is a profusely illustrated examination of the diversity of clivia variation, from the familiar orange and red flowers to the famous yellow forms and the pastel colors that are creating so much excitement today.

Media reviews

"If you carry lust in your heart for all things chlorophyllous, then the pictures alone in Clivias will drive you mad with desire."

—C. Colston Burrell, Horticulture

"Through Harold Koopowitz's research and the photographs of James Comstock we are rewarded with multiple exotic and beautiful views of Clivias to entice us into growing them with great pleasure."

—Joanne S. Carpender, National Gardener

"While the words form a rich cake, the photographs are equally rich frosting."

—Gerald D. Stewart, Let's Talk Plants

"This informative and attractively produced book on Clivia and the related but little-known genus Cryptostephanus will be welcomed by many readers."

—Isobyl la Croix, Orchid Review

"Much has been published on Clivia in the past, but this book is the first in its class that combines all aspects of this group of plants under one cover."

—Rogan Roth, South African Journal of Botany

"An easily readable text that is scientifically accurate ... I have no hesitation in recommending it."

—Graham Duncan, Veld and Flora

"The author engages the reader throughout this very thorough treatment of everything anyone would need (or want) to know about Clivia"

—Boyce Tankersley, Chicago Botanic Garden

"This book is a comprehensive treatment which covers the history and biology of clivias and provides lots of information on cultivation, color, and breeding."

—Yoneo Sagawa, Hawaii Orchid Journal

"If you read this book and view its rich photos, you may decide to start your own collection of clivias."

—Don Davis, Lynchburg News and Advance

"In his book ... Koopowitz treats the subject seriously while still making the text accessible to all."

Biology Digest

"An eye-opener for those who are familiar with only the orange varieties of this exotic species."

—Suzanne Hively, Cleveland Plain Dealer

"Informative ... immensely readable. It is a rare horticultural monograph that can be enjoyed purely on its literary merits. Harold Koopowitz has not only provided the ultimate guide to knowing and growing clivias, he should be congratulated for raising the standard for this sort of book to a new level."

—Alan W. Meerow, Journal of the International Bulb Society

"Koopowitz traces the history of the plant, in this extraordinary book and introduces us to clivias' variations, prominent hybridizers, their relatives, and their potential."

Horticultural Society of New York Newsletter

"Koopowitz has lengthy experience with the hybridization of bulbous plants, making his book authoritative and interesting to read ... The main part is devoted to a profusely and expertly illustrated discussion of clivia diversity ... Highly recommended."


"A brilliant new book."

—Robert Haehle, National Gardener

"The first monograph to explicitly describe clivias' horticultural heritage and cultural requirements, with brilliant support by more than 100 of Comstock's breathtaking color photographs. Invaluable information for both the professional and amateur."


"A monograph of impressive breadth and scope."

—Kathy Gibb, Grandiflora

"Koopowitz has produced a very sound work, which wil be used by botanists, hortoculturists, and enthusiasts for many years. (The) book is a handsomely produced major contribution and has already become my first recourse for any question that arises concerning the genus."

—Keith Hammett, Quarterly Review of Biology

"This comprehensive treatment of these unique and beautiful plants is recommended for all collections."

—Kathy Fescemyer, E-Streams

"This book is absolutely beautiful, worthy of any coffee table, except for one thing: It has so much information in it that I'd be hauling it out to the greenhouse all the time ... If you need to know anything about Clivias, you'll find it in this book."

Hobby Greenhouse

"[This book] fills a long-standing need as a source of detailed information on Clivia both for keen bulb growers and enthusiasts."

—Mike Jeans, Garden (Peterborough)

"Clivias is the first practical book on this genus."

—Meredith Grenier, Daily Breeze

"A delightful book."

Cherry Creek Daffodils

"An eye-opener for those who are familiar with only the orange varieties of this exotic plant."

—Suzanne Hively, Cleveland Plain Dealer

"A practical, comprehensive treatment of the history and biology of clivias."

SciTech Book News

"Great color photographs."

Sida, Contributions to Botany

"Clivias is the first practical book on this fascinating genus ... Koopowitz has treated the subject of clivias seriously while still making the text accessible to all. This is a book for everyone with an interest in clivias, whether windowsill grower or expert cultivator."

Pacific Bulb Society Newsletter

About the author

Harold Koopowitz

Harold Koopowitz is professor emeritus of ecology at the University of California at Irvine. The author of several books on horticulture and conservation, Koopowitz is currently editor-in-chief for the Orchid Digest. In 2003 he was awarded the Herbert Medal, the highest honor the International Bulb Society can bestow upon a person for meritorious achievement in advancing the knowledge of bulbous plants.

Read more about Harold Koopowitz

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