African violet (Saintpaulia spp.) Produces plantlets from divided plants and leaf cuttings. Normally grown as houseplants, African violets are tropical perennial plants, and maybe grow outdoors in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 11 through 12. Flower colors range from white through pink and fuchsia into blue-violet, and plants grow 6 to 16 inches wide, depending on the range. African violet plantlets require only small quantities of fertilizer.
In the Soil
Specialized potting soil feeds fresh African violet plantlets. Small plantlets from African violet leaf cuttings and divided plants don’t require fertilizer. When transplanting plantlets into new pots, use a specialized African violet potting soil, which prevents over-fertilization. African violet potting soil is slightly acidic and contains enough nutrients to feed the plantlets while they build their root systems. Fill 2- or 2 1/2-inch pots using 0.21-0.11-0.16 potting soil, and plant the African violets in order that their lowest leaves have been just above the ground. Water the pots and then let them drain thoroughly. Always use pots with drainage holes.
Little by Little
Applying just a small fertilizer when African violet increase slows down supplies all their requirements. Over-fertilized African violet plantlets grow poorly. New leaves on over-fertilized plants look hardened, as well as the plants develop tight centers. To prevent over-fertilizing plantlets, wait till their growth goes down and look for signs of yellowing old leaves, but be careful — plantlets that get too much lighting can develop the same symptoms. If you are unsure whether your African violet plantlets require fluid, fertilize one or two. If the leaf colour and increase improves, fertilize another plantlets. African violets need bright, indirect lighting, like a place about 3 feet from a southeast- or west-facing window.
Watering and fertilizing African violet plantlets usually occurs at the same time. African violets are susceptible to crown and root diseases caused by excessively moist potting soil, so don’t water the plantlets until the ground is dry to the touch. Dilute a 7-7-7 African violet fertilizer at a rate of 7 to 10 drops per 1 quart of lukewarm water, and apply the mixture to water the plantlets, or apply the fertilizer based on the manufacturer’s directions. Either stand the pots in 1 inch of fluid mixture and lift them out when the soil surface is moist, or pour the mixture into the pot until it looks through the drainage holes. Don’t receive any of this solution on the leaves. Catch the watered pots to drain thoroughly before replacing them on their own drip trays. African violets usually stop growing in winter. Water the plantlets in order that the potting soil surface is just moist, and don’t apply fertilizer.
African violet plantlets prosper when conditions are correct. Nighttime temperatures between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit are ideal for African violets, but plantlets grow anywhere in the assortment of 60 to 80 F. Growth slows down and flowering is reduced when temperatures are too high or too low. Chilled African violets turn dark, become water-soaked and wither. Put the pots in their drip strips to a flat container of sand or gravel full of water to give a humid atmosphere around the plants. Don’t allow plants to stand in water, and don’t drip water on their leaves because this causes unsightly spots.