The african violet It is one of the smallest and most beautiful flowering plants out there. Its height does not exceed thirty centimeters including its flower stems, and its delicate leaves of a more or less oval shape of a dark green color make it one of the most acquired by all those who are looking for a plant with which to decorate the home.
However, African violet care is not easy. It is very sensitive to excess water, and it must also be protected from snails, as they love to feed on the leaves. How can we have her as beautiful as the first day?
African violet care
If you have been given an African violet, or if you are thinking of acquiring one, then it is very important that you pay attention to its care, especially since we are talking about a plant that requires a little attention to cover its needs.
Step by step, we tell you what the keys are so that your plant is in perfect condition.
Our protagonist is a plant native to tropical Africa, where temperatures remain warm all year round. To have it beautiful we have to place it in a very bright room, without drafts. A good place would be for example in a bright dining room, as a centerpiece plant.
The humidity must be high, so it is highly recommended to purchase a humidifier or place containers with water near it. It is not recommended to spray it at any time as it could quickly rot. For this reason, it is convenient to water from below, that is, put it in a dish with water for 20 minutes and then remove it.
This aspect is very important, since the African violet needs an almost constant temperature. How much? Ideally, it should be between 17 and 21 degrees.
In fact, if the environment drops below 5 degrees, your plant will suffer, that’s why many times, especially in winter, it is better to put it inside the house but always in a room where there is no heating (since when the temperature rises too much It will also affect you).
Potted African Violet
This plant you can have it without problem in a pot. However, unlike others that you buy that just take it home you have to change the pot, in this case you have to keep it in the original. If you change it, you will make it grow weaker and also with the free space the only thing you will cause is that it multiplies its leaves, but not the flowers.
Because it doesn’t grow very fast, nor does it grow very fast, it can be kept in the same pot all the time. Of course, you have to change the soil so that it has nutrients.
The African violet is a bit “epicure.” And you may think that it needs peat, that it needs sand, or other draining elements, what if?
Actually, you need everything. On the one hand, it needs moisture to be retained, but at the same time the soil does not puddle. So the ideal would be a Always mix equal parts of garden substrate, peat, sand and mulch.
This will give you a suitable land for your needs.
The Irrigation frequency will be every 3-4 days in spring and summer, and every 7-10 days the rest of the year. During the warmer months of the year, it is advisable to fertilize it with a universal liquid fertilizer following the indications specified on the product packaging. It is very important not to overdo the dose, because if you do, the plant will wither.
Plagues and diseases
Regrettably, African violet has many diseases and pests that can affect you. In the case of diseases, the most common are: Roya, which causes it to have lesions in the lower part of the leaf, causing it to turn brown and / or gray due to poor air circulation and excess humidity; crown or root rot, due to overwatering; mold, due to lack of good drainage; root nodules; etc.
The vast majority of African violet diseases are caused by fungi, hence they can be fought with fungicides. In specialized stores you will even find some specific for certain diseases.
About pests, the most common They are aphids, mealybugs, spider mites, whiteflies, mites, thrips, beetles and snails.
To avoid the most common pests, such as mealybugs, thrips and aphids, preventive treatments can be done with neem oil spray (for sale here!) once a week.
Most common problems
As we have told you before, the African violet is a plant that requires some more specific care and needs that you must control so that it does not suffer (or lose health). Therefore, sometimes you can face her usual problems. Here we tell you the most common, their symptoms and what you should do to solve it.
No flowers grow
Do you have an African violet and it has no flowers? That is not very normal, so it is almost always because the watering is too abundant.
Try spacing the waterings to see if it starts to bloom.
The flowers are turning white
If you notice that flowers go from a characteristic purple, white, red … to have rather a whitish stain, then it means that there is an excess of humidity in the plant.
To do? Well, space the risks quite a bit.
If the colors of your flowers begin to notice them more muted, not so intense, then alerts you that it needs more light.
Very long petioles
The African violet is a plant that will always be short. What does it mean? Well, if its petioles increase, this is not because the plant is growing, but because try to give it more light.
In other words, you have to put it in a place with more lighting since the plant is asking for it.
Hbrown and limp eyes
This is something that you will almost always come across. And it is that, when you acquire the plant, it is very normal that this take some time to adjust to your new home. Therefore, do not be scared if you notice that the leaves have lost their color, that they have turned brown and limp.
Many times these symptoms tell us: you have to water it. But no, the truth is that no.
If it happens to you, all you have to do is take the plant, remove it from the pot, remove the soil it has and put a mixture of what we have talked about above to help it adapt better. But do not water it more or put it in light for longer than the corresponding time.
Propagation of African violets
Multiplying the African violet is not too complicated. All you have to do is take a blade and cut a blade with it. This must be put in water, so that after a few days it begins to take root, although you must be careful. For example, if the water has too much chlorine, or lime, it will affect the leaf and may not work for you.
If that happens, what you can do is, instead of putting it in water, you should put some rooting powder on the tail of the leaf. Once you have it, take a small pot and fill it with peat. Put the leaf in it and spray some water. If everything goes well (temperature, irrigation, location, etc.) a new plant should grow.
Characteristics of the saintpaulia
The African violet is native to Tanzania, in East Africa, and also in the jungles of Uzunga. This already makes you see that it is a plant that needs a warm and constant temperature.
It is characterized because it blooms throughout the year and does not have a very large growth. In fact, they can keep well in small pots or bowls throughout their lives. Its size can range from 4cm to 20cm.
Of the plant, the most striking thing about it are its leaves, which have rounded and heart shapes. They are dark green and their touch is velvety, due to the fact that they are covered by a fluff.
As for the stems, these grow from the leaves and from there the flowers come out. He does not throw many, and he can do it one at a time or doubles. They all have five starry petals and the usual colors are white, red, blue, purple … but you can also find shades of these colors.
Enjoy your plant.