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249 Highland Avenue

Rochester, NY 14620­3036
p. 585.461.1000
f.  585.442.7577
monroe@cornell.edu
http://counties.cce.cornell.edu/mo
nroe

AFRICAN VIOLET CARE


TEMPERATURE
African violets prefer average room temperatures 65-75˚F. The violets would like to have a ten percent
cooler temperature at night, but will be satisfied even if the temperature remains at its daytime setting.
African violets need humid conditions to do well and setting their pots on a pebble filled tray or saucer
with added water will help fulfill the humidity requirement. Do not let the pot sit in the water.

LIGHT
African violets need bright filtered light for production of bloom. For example, an east facing window
with a sheer curtain is bright filtered light. You may experiment by placing your violets in different
windows to find your own best source of light. Violets also do well under fluorescent bulbs. The plants
do best if placed 8-12 inched below the light source: two forty-watt bulbs.

WATER
Using room temperature water, water only when the surface of the soil feels slightly dry. You may
water from the bottom, top or wick water, but avoid splashing water on the leaves. This will spot the
leaves. It is a good idea to water from the top once a month to flush out accumulated salts, use a
generous amount of water to flush the plant, get rid of any excess water by draining well.

FERTILIZER
Use a fertilizer formulated especially for African violets. Apply 1/8 teaspo19 Trafalgaron to one gallon
of water and use in your regular watering routine. If growing the violets under artificial lights, use ¼
teaspoon fertilizer to one gallon of water.

SOIL
African violets require a loose porous soil. Many fine soil reparations are sold specifically for potting
African violets. These preparations are “soil-less” and are a combination of peat moss, vermiculite and
perlite. If the “soil” of the mix you purchase seems a little heavy, you may add a small quantity of
perlite to lighten the preparation.

PROPAGATION:
Remove a fresh leaf from an African violet plant, cut the leaf to about one inch in length and plant the
leaf in a small pot of soil-less mix or vermiculite. After a time plantlets will appear at the base of the
original leaf. The plantlets may be separated and placed in individual 2 ½ inch pots.

CULTURE TIPS
Temperature differences of more than 10 degrees up or down are detrimental to African violets. From
November through February violets may be placed directly in south or west windows; in March through
October the plants should be moved into indirect light. If light is too intense, the leaves will become
bleached and burned.

Compiled 1996
Retyped 8/06
249 Highland Avenue
Rochester, NY 14620­3036
p. 585.461.1000
f.  585.442.7577
monroe@cornell.edu
http://counties.cce.cornell.edu/mo
nroe

FS 501