As for your info on watering, you said, “…the inversion method, is most effective.” But you didn’t explain how to do that. I may never delve into the jungles of the Congo or race across the Serengeti on a wildebeest’s back, but at least I’ll have my Saintpaulia to help me imagine the wonder of it all. Prepare the potting medium. Check out - African violet supplies and resources. Very interesting to watch grow! Many thanks! My mother is a breast cancer survivor as well, props to you! You can go quite a long time before needing to repot these since they like to have snugly bound roots. As described in the article, inversion is a method of watering that involves setting a pot with holes in the bottom into a container of water to allow it to be absorbed from the bottom up. Remove a fresh leaf from the plant that you wish to propagate. I have others but this is the best one. Growing African violets from leaves or cuttings is a simple propagation method for new plants. Each “ring” of leaves will produce one round of blooming flowers. I use this one from PUR, available on Amazon, and it serves me very well! A healthy, firm and mature -- but not old -- leaf from the center of the African violet is the best choice for rooting. By far, the most common way to kill an African violet is to overwater it. I currently have about 40 babies growing all over my house and am now experimenting with a few things such as use of supplemental grow lights and containers that won’t break the budget with good success (eggs shells that come with their own clam covers. I’m glad the stripped leaves can be useful to carry on the legacy of your powerful and long-lived violet. The leaves forming from the very center of the plant are the youngest, and the largest leaves on the outside are the oldest. Nowadays, chloramine is also used. Fluorescent grow lights work well for African violets. The only stipulation is that every two months or so you must water the plant from the top so that water drains from the bottom, removing any mineral buildup. My husband’s new puppy had gotten up on a table in our sunroom and decided my violet’s pot of soil was a good place to bury her rawhide chew. The rooting hormone is unnecessary for African violets. It’s actually quite easy to water a plant from the bottom. If you got roots to sprout, then this should suffice to start a new plant! I recently put some African Violet leaves in soil to try too. Thanks so much for the answer, springtime uh? Leave the end of the cut African violet petiole to callus in open air for an hour before you put it in water to help it form roots more readily. Old African violet . Regularly monitor the water and look for any developing roots. They look kind of like alien jellyfish. If the roots or petiole become brown and mushy, discard the cutting and water, disinfect the jar and start the process again with fresh cuttings. This review summarizes the studies that have been conducted on the in vitro culture and micropropagation of this plant. Open the container occasionally to air out excess moisture or to add more, as necessary. ), prized for their attractive flowers and multiple forms, can grow and bloom under bright artificial or indirect light -- traits that make them ideal houseplants. I like to let my violets dry out a little, but I never let them sit bone dry. I take cuttings regularly and have limited success, mostly because I don’t “speak” houseplant as fluently as I do the language of the ones outside in my garden! The leaves will rot if they become too chilled. I am fairly new to violets and have about 26 I have propagated from my original two. They remind me of the grandness of Africa. As cultivation practices developed, Saintpaulia became popular for its frequent mutations, developing unique flowers and leaf shapes that have gained footing, resulting in mass production. Proper watering is essential to African violet care. Botanically named Saintpaulia for their European discoverer Baron Walter von Saint Paul-Illaire, these flowers are native to the Unguru Mountains in Tanzania and also parts of Kenya. 2. In fact, it’s quite simple. Just add 7 drops to every quart of water. GardenSafe Take Root Rooting Hormone is one of my favorites, and it’s available on Amazon. Gloves and eye protection are always a safe precaution, but not a requirement. Even inexperienced growers can quickly produce additional plants and expand their collection. 1. This method is difficult because it’s nearly impossible to avoid wetting the violets. A high-quality carbon filter works best for removing these gases, and one with an indicator light when it’s time for changing is ideal. They should have developed a few baby leaves at the base of the plant (seriously, they’re adorable) and have reached a height of about two inches. But what confuses me is the varieties that do not grow from the center crown into a circular manner, but rather as other plants do… Read more ». If the water could potentially contain bacteria, boil the water and allow it to cool to kill unwanted microorganisms. Over-fertilizing could also cause your African violet to droop its leaves. Your ultimate goal at this point is to do your best to mimic the natural habitat Saintpaulia originates from. I’ve never seen that, what a funky happening. Propagating African Violets from leaves. Hey there! Carefully close the lid tight, ensuring that the cuttings and pots all fit inside of the container. I'm letting them get a little bigger before I try transplanting them to well-moistened vermiculite to help them develop soil roots. My violets are crowded, and they reseeded themselves last summer. I’d carefully wipe the leaves to remove the frass, and check every leaf and stem for pests. You must have the violet touch! If repotting is necessary or desired, aim to do so in the spring of the year. Room-temperature water is ideal for African violets. Then we’ll all have something in common. Remove them by hand if you find them, and try applying a spray of neem oil. Cloudy water indicates bacterial activity, so replace it with fresh water as soon as possible. I think everyone should grow African violets. African Violets are fairly tough plants and are not known for being prone to diseases. African Violet Care: Basic Summary Light: Moderate to bright, indirect, indoor light. (Cling wrap works excellent!) Thx! Propping up a few grow lights about 20 inches away from the plants is beneficial. An incessant questioning of “Why?” affords him countless opportunities to ponder the (in)significance of the great and the small. Good luck and let us know how it goes! Once upon a time, chlorine was the only gas used to clean drinking water. Propagating Saintpaulia is relatively easy. Place the cutting in the water-filled jar so the leaf petiole is submerged in the water but the leaf is resting on the lip of the jar and completely exposed to air. Fill a wide-mouthed container with lukewarm water. If well-taken care of, African violets have rounded, fuzzy leaves that … African Violets – Care, Growing, Watering, Requirements, Propagation read more » For this project I mixed 2 parts perlite to 1 part African violet potting mix. I never seen that before. African violet leaves will burn -- or develop dry, brown spots and fail to develop roots -- if the cutting is in a too-bright spot. Should I keep it submerged until the baby leaves are bigger? Thank you for all of the information! Now what? If the roots grow too long, the African violet will have a more difficult time tolerating transplanting. The plants actually bloom more powerfully and regularly when rootbound. Empty any excess water remaining in the bowl of saucer and let the pots drain while you get the cuttings ready. Always remember that African violets are typically better off being a little dry rather than too wet. The edges of the leaves may turn upwards, turn yellow, or develop holes. And in a few months I’ll have perfectly fine gifts to give to people for holidays and birthdays – and you can bet your bottom dahlia I’ll teach them how to propagate their own cuttings. These look like tiny new plants growing from the leaf axils. Its survival along with my own has been very symbolic for me. Did you have your African violet outside at any point this summer, or on a patio? Ah, the moment we’ve all been waiting for! As an addicted propagator of African Violets, I enjoyed your article. O hope they all make it! If you look closely at the crown of Saintpaulia you will notice that leaves are arranged in a rosette pattern. This board contains articles, ideas and tips on African violet propagation, America's favorite houseplant. I raised African violets about 14 years ago and they did great. If the roots are the right size, you can plant the leaf directly into its intended pot. Generally, at this point, it’s best to discard the plant. This can be the result of too much direct summer sun. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. National Geographic author Andrew Evans has written an eye-opening look at the delicate state of African violets in their native habitat, where unscrupulous gatherers are plucking rare species from the jungle to sell to collectors. I wa scrolling through looking for the same answer when I stumbled upon my original post. Like soy sauce, a little rooting hormone goes a long way. Overwatering can kill a plant. I left the stem way too long but it has developed roots. I appreciate and will try what you suggested! Save money and take your gardening skills to the next level by propagating them. Good question. My violet will survive. The best container to use is a 2 inch pot. You’d want to plant that neck/stalk in some soil so that the bottom leaves of the violet are touching the soil. Just a thought. Quick question. Hi, A bit of Epsom salt can help to lighten the soil even more. There always seem to be a few lying around. How much or do you water the leaf while it is in the container (mini greenhouse)? Thank you for all the information. Place the rooted leaf in the vessel so the roots are spread. Get your African Violet Blooming With Schultz African Violet Plus If your African Violet is not thriving, here is a special plant food for African Violets and other blooming plants. So long as a few basic conditions are met, Saintpaulia is an amiable houseplant. It could well have been an over watering issue. For each leaf, you’ll require one pot around the 2-inch size for this project. I told about a 23 year old violet in my sunroom that my husband’s puppy stripped of most of its leaves in order to bury her rawhide chew. In both cases use good-quality water, such as rainwater, at room temperature to grow or water your leaves. That’s fascinating and I haven’t seen anything like it before, either. A little confused . The leaf grew and now I have a baby on the backside of the leaf. By placing the plants in a well-drained rooting medium and containing them in a mini-greenhouse with some bright light, you are effectively duplicating their native cloud forests. The ideal temperature range for rooting African violet cuttings is 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Very interesting! No roots just a stalk. Available in a variety of colors (pink, purple, blue, red and white), African violets are usually small-growing plants that require a bit more attention, but they make up for it by being beautiful houseplants. I'm letting them get a little bigger before I try transplanting them to well-moistened vermiculite to help them develop soil roots. I did rot my stem off once using this method but I didn’t throw out the plant. Remove it from the water after about 20 minutes, or until the potting mix is moist. If so how big and how to I eventually plant in dirt? Answer: Though leaves may be rooted in water, there are disadvantages to this method. Do not plant African violets too deep. Some of these links may be affiliate in nature, meaning we earn small commissions if items are purchased. Transfer these plants into a one-size-up container with a 1 part African Violet Mix and 1 part rooting medium mix, the same as the one we put together for the cuttings. Be sure that you cut as close to the root as possible. Now I have dozens of new babies crowding my bigger pots. Fiskars Nonstick Softgrip Micro-Tip Pruning Snips. That’s up to you and your preferences! Thank you for such a great article. Nowadays, chloramine is also used. Now that we have our mix and our pot ready, lightly moisten the mix and fill the pot. African violets prefer their soil to be on the dry side of moist. Matt, thank you for the propagation information. If you elect not to use artificial lighting, your violets will still be as happy as… well, whatever the plant equivalent of a clam is. The second method, also known as the inversion method, is most effective. Wicking African Violets for Better Water Delivery. It is a great boomer but the stem has gotten so long that it won’t stand up right anymore. If ingested, it can cause stomach discomfort and it can irritate any mucous membranes it comes into contact with. Here is more about what we do. Too much longer and the plant could have a difficult time establishing, and roots that are shorter can be far too delicate for planting. When rooting in medium , if the cut is made diagonally on the upper surface of the leaf petiole, you are likely to get more clones. One of my favorite aspects of Saintpaulia is that repotting is generally not required, and often is discouraged. For this kind of delicate work, I prefer to use pruners, like the Fiskars Softtouch Micro-Tip Pruning Snips. I have nurtured that violet successfully for 23 years. The leaves in those middle rows are the best candidates for cuttings. They really prefer temperatures 72 degrees or higher and humidity. But you can also pick it up at your local nursery, or find a suitable mixture online. After snapping or cutting off the chosen leaf near the base of the plant, make a diagonal cut with a sharp, clean and sterile knife or other cutting tool so only about 1 to 1 1/2 inches of petiole remains below the leaf. I came here to find an answer as to when I’d pot these. I used a few two-inch pots that were leftover from some succulents I purchased a few months ago. QI rooted my leaves in water and is there a specific planting method for them? Do your plants (and your own drinking water!) Nice work on getting those roots started. For simplicity’s sake I harvested leaves from a single plant, five total leaves for propagation. Walter discovered the plant in 1892 (the first year a game of basketball was played and when Coca-Cola was incorporated, for the history buffs out there) and sent seeds to his father in Germany. Hi Bonnie, Add this to a small plastic pot until it is 3/4 of the way full. Shorten the leaf stems to about 1 inch using a knife, your fingernails, or sharp snips. African violet leaf cuttings can successfully produce roots in water or soil. Seeds are never perfect replicas of the parent plant. Once you’ve mastered how to water African violets, half of your work is done. Soil should be porous and well-draining. Wick watering (or wicking) provides African Violets with consistent water, humidity and fertilizer. Watering an African Violet is different than watering your average houseplant, in that, it wants to be watered from the bottom. African violet leaf cuttings should root well in plain water. Now, stick the leaf (stem side down) into the mix, positioning the leaf directly in the center of the pot. Another lesson in Reduce, Reuse, Recycle – for those plastic supports, I used old plant tags. Some will develop roots as they grow. It offers a slightly acidic composition that drains well and is full of rich organic material, making it useful for more than African violets. #avsa #africanviolets #indoorplants #houseplants #saintpaulia. They look kind of like alien jellyfish. I keep mine in a small container and water that container directly, allowing the violet to soak up what it needs through the drainage holes. I’d wait until the spring time before seriously considering it, and even then you can safely wait until those leaves that are forming now are a larger size. After reading your article, I have started my own little green house. . African violets prefer bright but indirect light. I am entertained by the fact that one leaf will produce as many as three or four new plants. Thank you for reading and for taking the time to comment, it means so much , I have noticed the last couple of day that my African Violets has holes on the leaves and could like black caviar poo what is this Thank you Kind Regards Mary Agius, All signs point to this being an insect infestation Mary, likely some type of worm/caterpillar that produces frass (waste) as you’ve described. Carefully place the stem of each leaf into the rooting medium. Repotting these violets once or twice a year is helpful to remove the unsightly neck. In my long list of “favorite plants,” the African violet sits comfortably somewhere near the top. Remove mature and healthy leaves from the host plant. This is a combination of chlorine and ammonia, and it does not dissipate without filtering or special treatment. How to Grow and Split African Violets. Hi Kim! Always save those pots! This can be prevented by keeping irrigation water off of the foliage and using water that is room temperature (“African Violet Diseases”, 2016). Allow it to soak into the plant for an hour. Your goal is to remove the bottom of the root ball in an an amount equal to the length of the neck; in other words, if your violet has 1″ neck you want to remove 1″ of soil and roots from the bottom of the root… Read more », Awesome post! What do I do with it? I’ll fill that container and let the violet drink, then let it sit for awhile until it’s had time to dry out a little before starting the process over again. They prefer a west-facing window during the summer and a south or east-facing window during the winter months. For the rooting medium, I made my own. Consider it the Usain Bolt of plant watering. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in urban and regional studies. The temperature has dropped too drastically. African Violet Potting Soil Mix. Saintpaulia prefers well-drained soil, but cuttings are even more particular. Please share with us in the comments! That’s why I used a rooting hormone for this project, to help these cuttings establish themselves. Can this be replanted with rooting medium? You’ll be placing the leaf stems in here. Propagating with Side Shoots. The media should be moistened vermiculate or 50% bagged African violet mix and 50% perlite. I have beautiful plants, and they almost bloom all year long. African violets should be allowed to dry out between each watering for best results. This fact makes African violets relatively unique in the plant world … © Ask the Experts, LLC. The ideal temperature range for rooting African violet cuttings is 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. I made a short video showing how it’s done and there is a step-by-step tutorial (below) as well. (Gesneriaceae) is a popular ornamental pot plant that is easy to culture ex vitro and in vitro relative to other herbaceous ornamentals.This quality makes it an ideal system for in vitro regeneration experiments. Went to water and it fell out of the pot. I think you’ve got a good system with those pots, essentially letting the plants do the watering themselves. African violet (Saintpaulia ionantha H. You have probably seen this done in water but you can also root them directly in potting mix. Do we drill drainage holes in the part where we start the leaves. Choose 4-5 leaves from one African Violet plant if possible, otherwise 2 leaves are also fine to start with. Propagation of African violets to gain more plants of the same variety is normally done by leaf propagation. Many African violets sucker or produce side shoots. Purchase a commercial potting mix that contains vermiculite and perlite soil conditioners. Miracle-Gro 8-Qt. It wil… Select and prepare an African violet leaf following Steps 1 … This morning I found it stripped of nearly all its leaves! That might help it get established and start growing somewhat normally. It feels more like a handful of sand when you’re building the perfect sandcastle. A clear glass or plastic jar with a top as wide or wider than the bottom of the jar allows for easy monitoring of the water and roots as they begin to form. Any leaves that have… Read more ». The second answer would be, African Violets on wicks grow faster in my personal experience. You don’t need to coat the entire leaf stem in hormone powder, as long as about half of the length of the stem gets a fine coating. The easiest solution to remove these substances from your water is to add a filter to your tap. Fertilizer scorching. Wow, leaves under the water? When several roots about 1 inch long develop, typically after a few weeks, the African violet is ready for transplanting into a growing medium like potting soil. Position the jar so the cutting will receive bright but indirect light. I recommend filling the bottom of the container with about a quarter inch of water with the “roof” of the greenhouse open. Angela Ryczkowski is a professional writer who has served as a greenhouse manager and certified wildland firefighter. Put the leaves in the bowl of water… I’d suggest leaving it for now and monitoring its growth, and if the parent plant begins to look a little stressed it’s time to remove the new one. 1. Choose a Leaf Watering: Keep soil moist to dry, and allow soil around roots to dry out before watering to encourage blooming.Water from the bottom with room temperature water by placing the plastic grower's pot in water, and allowing the plant to absorb the water ( not more than 30 minutes ). Select leaves from the middle row of the plant to use as cuttings. The mini greenhouse shouldn’t have too much water in it, but it should never dry out completely. We occasionally link to goods offered by vendors to help the reader find relevant products. My then 17 year old daughter brought me a gift basket with a beautiful African violet and some other pretty, green “house” plants. I’ve used it for other small projects when in a bind and it works just fine! One of the reasons it ranks so highly in my favor is that they seem to thrive on neglect. Go to to learn more about growing African violets! And if you love home propagation, let us direct your attention to this piece on getting started with succulents. There are a few important tips to keep in mind: Violets do not react well to cold water; it can cause their roots to shrivel and their foliage to die off. Hi Matt, Avoid over-watering since water-logged roots are easily attacked by P. ultimum. This upbringing keeps him permanently affixed to the outdoors where most of his personal time is invested in gardening, bird watching, and hiking. (Shh, I used one from our baking set; don’t tell my fiance!) Yes a regular clear plastic container will work fine, its main purpose is to create a humid environment for the cuttings. He presently resides in Philadelphia and works under the sun as a landscaper and gardener, and by moonlight as a writer. 23 years ago I was in the hospital after breast cancer surgery and reconstruction. You could try cutting off the top of the leaf (above the baby plant) and some of the edges and re-burying the leaf stem a little deeper into the rooting medium, getting the baby closer to the potting mix. If you choose to mix your own soil when repotting African violets, it’s important to think of the natural habitat where these plants originated. African Violets Propagation Directions. I also had some pots that had a wick system to continually wick water. Lightly dip each stem into the rooting hormone. I’ve always dipped my cuttings right into the bottle of hormone powder, but you can shake some of the hormone onto a flat surface if you prefer. The second and vastly superior method is to fill the tray or container that your violets sit in with water. I know it sounds dumb but is there any way try to re-root it by cutting the stem off? I'm letting them get a little bigger before I try transplanting them to well-moistened vermiculite to help them develop soil roots. Position this container in an area that is bright, but not hot. Your African Violet leaf should still be waiting patiently on the side at this point. Thank you again. 3 weeks later it has small roots but to my surprise the leaf steam is growing tiny baby leaves under water. Remember that starting from a cutting is to start a plant with almost no need for water, since it has few roots to pull it up and almost no material to spread that water to. You can make one clean cut across the top of each leaf, effectively slicing away the top half of the leaf. It’s also why you typically find African violets sold Matryoska-like in a no-frills pot stacked within a decorative pot lacking drainage holes. Product photos via PUR, Garden Safe, Miracle-Gro, and Fiskars. Nov 7, 2020 - There are several ways to propagate African violets, whether in water, in soil, or some other medium. The blade of the leaf should just touch the surface of the rooting medium. It wil… The difference between it and vermiculite is insignificant, and I can also readily buy perlite in these convenient 8-quart sized bags. In fact, you can root them in water. It can be tricky to get your violets to bloom so much, I’ve only been able to get one plant to do that for me, but I’ll take it. Room-temperature water is ideal for African violets. Well, they’re really easy to grow (and split and propagate) as long as you follow a few easy guidelines (and if you don’t know what to do, check out my Growing African violets post here), and they’re pretty! These are available on Amazon. To re-pot an African violet with a neck, remove the plant from its container. In fact, keeping these plants healthy often comes down to watering. Do I keep it under water till the roots are longer? Thanks for any info or help you have. But there’s a more personal reason in there, too. Violets do not react well to cold water; it can cause their roots to shrivel and their foliage to die off. Cold water has come into contact with the violet, leaving telltale damage. African Violet Diseases. Firm the soil around the stems so that the leaves are upright and in place. After a period of approximately eight weeks, your leaves should be developing into proper violets. To make the transfer with the best success and with the least danger for your developing plant, use a small butter tub cup containing a bit of water. Jul 1, 2017 - The African violet leaves that I've had in water since November of last year (about 6 months ago) have sprouted roots and little baby plants. There’s a short list of ailments that can plague the African violet, but they are uncommon when you relax and allow the plants to do what they naturally do. Step 1: Remove and trim leaf. The root system that develops is one that is … Some people say to imagine it’s like oatmeal, but I’ve never grabbed a handful of oatmeal before. It’s funny how determined African violets are to reproduce, isn’t it? This was exactly my question as well – re how to deal with neck of my mature and beautiful African violet. – healthy African Violet plant – flower pot with potting mix – a shallow bowl of water – scissors – water. I never let… Read more ». African violets are very easily propagated from leaf. By the time you’re finished reading this, you’ll be armed and ready to start your own African violet assembly line! It sounds like you’re describing something called a neck. Take a healthy African Violet plant and cut a few leaves. Learning to water an African violet (Saintpaulia ionantha) properly is essential to growing a healthy, long-lived plant. Place the potted and soon-to-be-beautiful African violets into the clamshell containers. Uncredited photo: Shutterstock. This can take a day or two. The new plant rosettes will form from this area. While this may sound odd to those unfamiliar with these types of plants, don’t worry. I’ve never had this happen before.
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