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In my opinion this is poor practice. African violets need food when producing blossoms, and since the plant ideally should bloom continuously. It would severely deprive the plant if fertilizer were withheld. What soil mix should I use? I use a mixture of two parts sterilized soil, one part coarse perlite, and one part coarse vermiculite.

Any purchased sterilized soil can be used. Perlite and vermiculite help keep the soil loose and porous. The lower leaves turn soggy — should I take them off? It is a natural process for older leaves to die off. They will be replaced by new growth in the center of the plant. Any bottom leaves turning yellow or spotted should be removed.

African violets and Collectible houseplants

What is wrong when the soil is wet but the plant seems limp? This may be an indication that the plant has been overwatered, and possibly crown rot has set in. There is not too much that can be done. You may be able to take off a healthy leaf or two to start a new plant, but the old plant may not live if the center crown has started to rot. How often should I repot my African violet? Do not necessarily use a larger pot each time you repot. This is usually called a neck. It can be taken care of by setting the plant deeper into the soil when you repot.

Use the proper size pot, not one that is too large or too deep. If the soil and roots are hard and compacted, and cannot be loosened, then a portion of the bottom of the root mass can be sliced off with a knife. Repot so that the lower layer of healthy green leaves rests on the soil line at the top of the pot.

While, we are no longer able to respond to questions about African violets that are not covered within this article, you may find the answer you are seeking in the comment section below.

10 Tips for Caring for African Violets - Garden Lovers Club

Why is it essential to repot the African Violet? I ask this because my husband has an electric green thumb — he really is great with plants, and his African Violets that he has had for decades completely thrive in the same pot. I have a brown thumb, obviously. What he does is add new soil throughout the year sporadically as he feels necessary. Any thoughts appreciated! A lot of great advice here, I am expecting an African violet from a customer of mine. Just trying to get some hints, it will live in the office and everyone will see it.

What causes some of the leaves to get almost white, still blooming and otherwise look healthy. I know nothing about AV and I had one that bloomed all the time. But I let my friend transplanted it and I believe I watered it to death or the soil was not the kind it needed. Never knew it needed to dry out.

I have a baby that my ill mother-in-law left and I am trying to keep it alive. It is very tiny. Now I see that is wrong.


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I have gotten a few tips from reading all the replies. I wanted to tell everyone who has never done it that you CAN start a new plant from a healthy leaf!

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It measured about a foot across. But try as I might I had it all but killed off in 10 mos! I selected 8 of the healthiest leaves, cut their stems at a 45 degree angle, dusted the cut end with the powder and inserted them in the special soil. At first I was even terrified to cut the 8 leaves off, but I got brave and did because the plant was surely doomed the way it was going. I am getting ready to put each one into an African Violet potting soil now. I am thrilled I may get to save this old plant after all!!

An astonishing 47 yrs!? Pray tell, how do you do it?

African Violet Care: How To Grow African Violet Plants [GUIDE]

Can you please tell us in a nut shell what your best advice is for growing such long living plants? When Baron Walter von Saint Paul first brought a flowering plant he called the Usambara violet from East Africa to Germany in , little did he know how many people would fall passionately in love with the African violet. Her methods have produced a houseful of continuously blooming African violets, many of which sport blue ribbons won at flower shows.

What window exposure is best for African violets?

6 Key Tips to Growing Perfect African Violets

African violets should grow well in any window with good bright light, not shaded by a porch or trees. In south-facing windows, protect violets from hot sun in summer with sheer curtains or blinds. African violets do well in a south window in the winter. For east and west windows, check to see that plants do not get too warm when the sun is in that area. North windows will provide sufficient light to bloom most of the year.

Keep plants close to the window for maximum light. An African violet on a table in the middle of a room may look pretty, but may not receive sufficient light to keep blooming.

Easiest Way to Propagate African Violets (Works 100%) - Part 2.

What about fluorescent light? If you do not have bright window light, then fluorescent fixtures are the answer. I use four-foot fixtures with two cool white bulbs in each. I have used one warm white and one cool white bulb in a fixture with good results. The optimum distance from pot to light is 8 to 12 inches. The best guide is to feel the top of the soil: if it is dry to the touch, then it is time to water.

African violets should be allowed to dry out between each watering for best results. Overwatering can kill a plant. The fine roots of an African violet need air, which cannot penetrate a soggy wet soil mass. Either is fine. It is important not to use cold water; lukewarm or warm is preferred. If you water from the top, be careful not to get water on the leaves when the plant is in the sun; this is to avoid leaf spots. If you water from the bottom, the excess water should be discarded after the plant has taken up all it needs. Do not allow an African violet to sit in water indefinitely.

What size pot is best for African violets? Overpotting will delay bloom. The usual recommendation is that the pot diameter should be one-third the spread of the leaf span. For example. Violets bloom best when they are potbound. Which is better, a clay or plastic pot? Either is suitable. Plastic pots can be kept cleaner and will hold moisture longer, and are what I use for violets. Clay pots allow the air to penetrate to the roots, which is beneficial. I use clay for succulents and cacti.

Salts may build up on clay pots, rotting violet leaves resting on the top rim. Protect the leaf stems by using a folded strip of aluminum foil to cover the top rim of a clay pot. Any reputable fertilizer is good. I like to use a water-soluble fertilizer. A balanced fertilizer with equal parts of nitrogen first number , phosphorus second number , and potash last number , such as , has produced good show plants for me.


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  • If you are not getting good bloom try a fertilizer with a higher middle number, which will contain more phosphorus, such as Should you withhold fertilizer when the African violet is in bloom?