Plants A to Z

How to Grow African Violets

African violets are among the most popular houseplants in the world, and with good reason. These low-growing, compact plants flower multiple times a year and come in various leaf shapes and colors. African violets may thrive well inside if you follow a few easy principles. With a bit of practice, you can maintain them in bloom almost all year and grow them to be the size of dinner plates.

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Care for African Violets

Bright, warm, and humid environments are ideal for African violets. Water should not come into contact with their leaves since this may cause brown patches. To foster a healthier plant, remove dead blooms and foliage as soon as you notice them.

Check the soil and plant regularly to ensure that no dead leaves have accumulated. This will promote the growth of rot. It's all about balance when it comes to growing these houseplants; you have to ensure that all of the components that go into their care are balanced.

They should be maintained moist enough not to dry out but still exposed to fresh air to avoid becoming too stuffy and exposed to sunshine without injuring the tips of their leaves. Don't be disappointed if your African violets become damaged during the process; it's all part of the process.


The light should be bright but not direct. Fluorescent lamps set 12 to 15 inches above the leaves are often used to cultivate them.


It's critical to use a potting mix that drains effectively. Poor drainage can lead to root rot, which causes the plant to get soggy and lose its leaves, so make sure the plant is never left lying in water for a long time.


Warm water should be used to keep the soil moist, and a high humidity level should be achieved. To avoid damage, avoid allowing water to contact the leaves, except for a gentle misting. When watering, water from below or press the water spout into the soil. Allowing the plant to sit in water is not a good idea.

Humidity, Temperature, and Fertilizer

Allow the temperature to not dip below 60 degrees Fahrenheit. At 70 degrees Fahrenheit, they thrive.

Every other week, fertilize with African violet fertilizer.

African Violet Propagation

Leaf cuttings or offsets can be used to propagate African violets. From the side, adult plants occasionally generate plantlets or shoots. Remove these and pot them separately. Removing them also promotes the parent plant to produce more blooms.

African Violet Potting and Repotting

When African violets are slightly underpotted, they thrive. Only re-pot when necessary into a pot one size larger. To re-pot these plants, grab the entire plant, lift it, and place it in a larger container, careful not to harm their root systems.

Falling leaves, overcrowding, and roots that emerge from the soil surface are common symptoms that a plant is stressed and needs to be repotted. Keep an eye out and re-pot if you believe it will be of assistance.

Varieties of African Violets

The S. ionantha plants were first introduced in Germany in 1893. The S. confusa was introduced two years later. Thousands of variants have been created since then.

African violets are now available in single and double blossoms and a variety of hues and leaf shapes. Gloxinia is frequently confused with an African violet. If you like African Violets, you might also appreciate the Streptocarpus species or the Goldfish Plant, which are closely related.

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Elissa Sanci
Elissa Sanci
Elissa Sanci, the owner of the website, and senior writer of New York Garden; graduated from Santa Barbara City College – a famous public school in California with many diverse training professions, and she majored in horticulture.