African Violet Society of Queensland (Inc.)

Frequently Asked Questions

Why doesn’t my violet flower? 

It could be that your plant is hungry. A lack of fertilizer will result in small blooms and pale foliage.  Good light is necessary for good blooms also. Violets are a bit vain – they like the bright lights to perform. African violets will ‘perform’ well inside a brightly lit window – but not in direct sun. You can shield your plants from strong sunlight with sheer curtains. If growing inside a window it is a good idea to turn the pots a quarter turn every couple of days. This will promote a good even growth. Violets are inclined to grow towards the light. Insufficient light will result in lanky plants with long leaf stems (petioles). Too much light will make your plant too compact, hard and brittle.


How large a pot should I use?

The general rule of thumb is that the diameter of the pot should be approximately one-third the diameter of the plant. Too large a pot means that the plant will put all its energy into root production at the expense of flowers. In addition, the excess growing medium will hold more water than the plant can use, resulting in root rot.


How often should I water my African violets? 

African violets should be watered when the soil feels dry to the touch. Water should be tepid or room temperature. Never use softened water. If you place your plant in a saucer of water, don’t leave it in the saucer longer than 20 minutes.


My African violet looks ‘sickly’ as though it needs watering, but the soil is quite moist.

If your pot is too deep the roots of the plant cannot use all the water the pot will hold, or the soil may be too heavy and not allow sufficient aeration. If your plant has become excessively dry, the fine hair roots will have become damaged or destroyed. In this case water with no more than 30 ml tepid water. Repeat daily until pot is adequately moistened.

What conditions best suit African violets?

African violets grow best when the temperature is between 16°C and 26°C with a drop of about 5°C overnight. However they are quite tolerant and will survive short exposure to temperatures beyond these limits. They like fresh air but not drafts. Humidity, around 40% - 60%, is also important to good growth.


If you have any specific questions please Contact us and we will try to help.