Monday, May 20, 2024

Fertilizer and variegation

Question:  I purchased ‘Rob’s Whippoorwill’, which originally had variegation on the outermost ring of leaves, but it has now started to turn all green.  I feed all of my violets with ‘Miracle-Gro African Violet Food’ (7-7-7 formula), every time I water, 10 drops per quart.  Am I feeding too heavily for a variegate?  Do they require […]

Plants for cold windowsill

Question:  We live in an old home, and most of the windows are quite cold.  I’m afraid that my windowsill will be much too cold for growing violets in the middle of winter.  Any suggestions on what I can grow there? Answer:  Actually, violets will tolerate a good deal of cold.  We grow some (showplants even) on […]

Suggestions for cold windowsill

Question:  We live in an old home, and most of the windows are quite cold.  I’m afraid that my windowsill will be much too cold for growing violets in the middle of winter.  Any suggestions on what I can grow there? Answer:  Actually, violets will tolerate a good deal of cold.  We grow some (showplants even) on […]

Low humidity

Question:  In the winter, with the furnace being used, the air in our home tends to be very dry.  What problems might this cause for my violets?  How can I increase the humidity? Answer:  This can be a problem for many of us.  Though they don’t need very humid, damp, conditions to thrive, violets won’t be happy […]

Water stains on leaves

Question:  I’m very careful with my watering, not to get any on the foliage of the plant, but many of my violets still show what seem to be stains on their leaves.  These appear mostly on the leaf edges. Answer:  This is a very common problem, particularly when nights are cool and soil is damp.  What’s happening […]

Effect of gas/propane on violets

Question:  I intend to grow my plants in my basement, where I have my furnace and hot-water heater.  I’ve been told that the gas from these appliances can damage my violets.  Should I worry? Answer:  No.  Your plants are in danger if there is a natural gas (or propane) leak but, at that point, you would be […]

Temperature

Question:  We keep our home quite cool at night, about 55f degrees.  Will this be too cold for our African violets? Answer:  It won’t be too cold, but they won’t be very happy about it.  Most varieties currently being grown prefer temperatures somewhere between 60f and 80f degrees–much the same as we do.  Violets will survive in […]

Growing large plants

Question:  I recently visited an African violet show.  Many of the violets displayed there were very large, perhaps 18″ or more across.  Mine have never gotten that large.  Can you explain why? Answer:  First, keep in mind that these are showplants.  A prize-winning plant is the result of good culture and plenty of TLC.  Serious exhibitors also usually […]

Feeding of variegated plants

Question:  I am new to the African violet world and would like to know more about variegation.  What is ‘Tommi-Lou’ and ‘Champion’ variegation?  Do I care for and feed variegates the same as nonvariegates? Answer:  Variegation is simply white, beige, or pink coloring in the foliage.  ‘Tommi-Lou’ variegation will normally appear on the edges of the […]

Variegated leaves turning green

Question:  I have a violet that, about a year ago, developed a variegated leaf, then another, until all were variegated.  I started new plants from those leaves, but they all grew green leaves.  The variegated suckers also didn’t seem to produce much variegation when rooted.  Do you have any ideas? Answer:  Our guess is that this is […]