Within the genus Clivia miniata, there is considerable variation and a number of sub sets are generally recognised viz:
The ‘Clivia miniata Landscape’ form which is a hardy plant bred for resilience in higher light areas and with flower colour usually a lighter orange.
The ‘Belgium Hybrid’ is a Clivia miniatabred for compact form and somewhat earlier flowering, with generally a mid to darker orange flower.
The various Clivia hybrids which are more shade loving tend to exhibit a taller growth habit, some having wider leaves. Flower colour tends towards the mid to darker orange tones and leaves appear much darker due to the heavier shade they are grown under.
Significant breeding efforts and natural variation in cross pollination both give rise to diverse colours such as pastel, green, bronze, picotee and any number of combinations of these.
The Broadleaf forms originate predominantly from breeders in Japan and China. These broadleaf Clivias are generally compact and exhibit special characteristics in width/length leaf ratios, patterns of venation and flower colours ranging from light to darker orange and in rare cases, yellow.
The true ‘Red’ Clivia is a misnomer in the marketing world, there are simply specimens that exhibit very dark orange colouration.
The Yellow flowering Clivias were the ‘must have’ collectors plants of the past 20 years due to the colour being an aberration in nature but are now line bred for the yellow trait.
There are now significant numbers of Yellow Clivias available in the market place although quality varies widely. Flower tone at one end of the spectrum can appear almost white, through to rich buttercup yellow with hints of lime green. Environmental factors can also affect the colour tone, for example a plant flowered under green 50% shade factor cloth will invariably differ from the colour tone when the same plant is flowered under 70% Beige coloured cloth!
There is no such Clivia flower colour as ‘white’ due to the carotene pigmentation in the sub layers of the petal tissue.
The Peach flowering Clivia is now one of the collectors plants of choice. Again, these are being line bred from rare peach toned examples of plants originating through natural genetic variation.
Colour tone ranges from light through medium to dark Peach with some forms also exhibiting green lines through the tepals, a result of green chloroplasts within the cell structures.