How to Grow African Violet Plants

“African violets are sensuously purple flowers with a tiny fleck of yellow in the center. As their name suggests, they are native to Africa, growing mainly in Tanzania, neighboring Kenya, and other tropical ecosystems. The water should be room temperature, or as close as possible in temperature to the air around your plants. When the water is too cold, it chills the roots of African Violets, causing leaves to curl down as the water is absorbed into the plant. Also, if watering from the top, cold water can cause leaf spotting.”

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These easy-care little wonders provide year-round blooms in a range of colors. Here’s how to grow African violets, including tips on watering, feeding, shaping, cleaning and repotting.

Little wonders

African violets are one of the easiest flowering houseplants to grow. They’re versatile, blooming year-round in a wide variety of colors and sizes, some with variegated foliage or ruffled or white-edged blooms.

Plus, we feel sentimental about them: They remind us of our grandmothers.


Because most violets have green leaves, plants with variegated foliage intrigue. However, these varieties can be difficult to grow: Variegated plants aren’t as strong, and their leaf color tends to fade in hot weather.

Potting procedures

No matter which variety you choose, African violets perform best in light, fluffy soil. It should be so loose that you easily can push your finger to the bottom of the pot.

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