1. Home

African Violet (Saintpaulia)

By

African Violet

African Violet

Photo courtesy Michael Krefft/stock.xchng.

Every home has an African violet in it at some time. They seem to flourish for years and then give out without warning. They are favorites because they don't require a dormant period and can keep blooming year round. And you can find flowers in shades of purple, white and red.

Light: African violets prefer a spot with indirect sun all day, but will bloom with considerably less exposure. Morning light is better for them than hot, afternoon light.

Water: Keep the soil evenly moist, but not wet. Too wet and they'll rot. Too dry and they won't flower. Don't worry, you'll find a balance.

Fertilizer: Because they are such profuse bloomers, feed whenever you water. There are special African violet fertilizers, but any water soluble fertilizer for flowering houseplants would be fine.

Temperature: Typical house temperatures of 65 - 80̊F are perfect. They may slow down a bit in the heat of the summer, but then, so do you.

Additional Tips: Water from the bottom of the pot. African violets don't like to get their leaves wet. (How do they survive in nature?) There are special African violet pots that have a slow release reservoir that wicks water up from under the soil. These work well, but you can just as easily set your pot in a saucer of water until the water is absorbed.

Cold drafts will cause the flowers and buds to drop and intense direct sun will burn the leaves.

  1. About.com
  2. Home
  3. Gardening

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.