Botanical name: Saintpauli ionanthaAfrican Violets

African Violets are named after Baron Walter von Saint Paul, who first discovered this plant. The plant is native to tropical East Africa. As this plant requires mild to warm temperatures and filtered light it is usually seen as an indoor plant.

The African Violet has come of age with new breeding bringing this ever popular houseplant into the 21st century.

Luscious colours, dramatic contrasts and incredibly delicate edging are amongst the best features with the rosettes of fetching heart-shaped foliage setting the whole package off.

Show them off by placing in a nice decorative container and perhaps place them on a window sill, use them in a floral display or dress up a table setting.

Suitable for pots & containers.

Caring for African Violets

African violets are a bright cheery plant that can sometimes be tricky to grow. To grow African violets successfully you need to provide conditions similar to those of their origins. Over-watering and incorrect light levels are common problems with growing African violet, so if you follow these tips you should have greater success.African Violets in pots

Best performance is achieved in bright indirect light, such as an east facing window sill and constant temperature and humidity is maintained. Liquid fertilise regularly and pinch off finished flowers and any tired foliage.

Watering:  Don’t over water the plants but don’t let them dry out too much.

Water when the top of the soil feels dry, using enough water to run through the drain holes.  Then don’t water again until the soil feels dry again. 

Water the plant under the foliage and never let it stand in water.

Fertiliser:  You can fertilise two to three times a year using a fertiliser specifically designed for flowering plants. Apply using a diluted concentration to prevent any damage.

Light:  They need a bright position near a window with filtered sunlight, not direct afternoon sunlight.  African violets prefer temperatures between Turn the plants regularly to establish even growth.  Artificial lighting can also be used to grow African violets.

General Tips: Circulation of air is important but avoid excessively cold or hot air streams, and sudden changes in the temperature. A minimum of 60% humidity is recommended.

Remove any dead flowers, yellow leaves, and divide any double crowned plants.  African violets flower better if single crowned.

The most common pest and diseases in African violets are powdery mildew and mites, but thrip and mealy bugs can also been found. There are  specific pesticides available to deal with these problems, and prevention is better than a cure.

Joining the African Violet Association of Australia is another good way of finding out more about African violets: