Feel like you are doing all right things but your African Violet won’t flower? Or do you just want to ensure you have a steady supply of flowers on your plant?
African Violets bloom during their growing cycle which is spring and summer. However, with the right care, some varieties will bloom continuously for most of the year. Here are 5 tips that will ensure the best blooms on your plant
1. Pot Size
African Violets bloom best when their pots are a little snug. Plants that are placed in too large a pot frequently do not flower.
- Some varieties will not flower until the root system reaches the pot’s edge.
- A good rule of thumb is to make your pot one-third the size of your plants. In other words, the diameter of your plant should be three times that of your pot.
For more information on pot sizes and types, see our blog post here
Refreshing the potting mix will assist in keeping your African Violet flowering vigorously.
- As a minimum, repot your plant into fresh mix annually and take advantage of this moment to prune the root system and tidy up the plant
- Ideally, your plant should be transplanted after each flowering period (6-8 months)
- Ensure the PH of your mix is correct (around 6.5)
- Direct sunlight can burn leaves and damage your plant. However, African Violets love bright indirect light
- For strong flowering, daylight should be around 10 – 14 hours a day
- In the summer, a north-facing window or somewhere it is protected from the harshest rays of the afternoon sun. In the winter, an east-facing window gives your plant full light without the risk of sunburn.
- Use a sheer curtain to filter strong light
- Rotate your plant pot, a quarter turn every few days to ensure even exposure
- For large collections, artificial grow lights (LED strips or fluorescent tubes) produce the best results.
- Light meters are inexpensive method to ensure your plant is getting adequate light. Optimal light intensity is optimal intensity is around 10-20,00 lux (900-1100 foot-candles)
- Not all indoor plant fertilisers are equal. Some are formulated especially for producing strong growth, while others are specific for flowering and fruiting.
- Use a fertiliser during the growing season that is formulated especially for African Violets.
- This means that the fertiliser will be high in phosphorous, a macro nutrient which is produces strong roots and flowers.
- A good brand of fertiliser should specify the ratio of nutrients in the blend.
- These macro-nutrients are nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K), or NPK for short
- The NPK ratio should appear as 3 numbers on your fertiliser. Look for 3 numbers that are close to equal
- Water your plant often and sparingly.
- Your potting mix should be moist but not water logged.
- Over watering can cause root rot which will slow down the growth, flower production, or potentially kill your plant.
- Ensure that you use room-temperature or tepid water.
For more information on watering your African Violet, see our blog post here
BONUS Tip: Grooming
- Avoid allowing flowers to die on your plant flowers to die.
- Removing spent blooms will encourage the plant to keep producing new blooms.
- Remove old outer leaves to encourage the plant to produce fresh growth from the crown