When caring for violets, one should not forget that these are African plants. Their roots are accustomed to a poor, but well-drained substrate, and although there are short-term rains every day in the habitats of the culture, they do not tolerate clogging. Varieties and hybrids are well suited for growing in pots, but you still need to water the violets carefully and regularly the culture does not like waterlogging or drying out of the substrate.
how often do you water an African violet?
There is no single correct answer, it is impossible to draw up a schedule. Many factors affect how many times a week you need to water the violets.
At different times of year
If saintpaulias stand on a windowsill without lighting, watering really depends on the season. In spring, the bush grows, consumes more water, in summer it is hot, the liquid evaporates quickly. Between irrigations, the soil surface should dry out by about 5-10 mm.
You need to water the flowers less often in autumn and winter, when there is less sun, the temperature drops. The substrate should dry out to about the depth of the first phalanx of the index finger.
Under artificial lighting, Saintpaulias are watered regardless of the season, as during the period of active growth. Only at temperatures below 18 ° C, the intensity of irrigation is slightly reduced.
Violets with buds are watered more abundantly and more often than those resting after flowering. But only because they consume more moisture.
According to age
Healthy adult violets with a developed rosette and roots in any conditions drink more young plants, especially children. It is necessary to water the culture as the upper layer of the substrate dries out, and not focus on the schedule, age, or other factors.
It’s just that you need to be especially careful with children. They can die from the slightest blocking or drying out of the soil, while an adult bush tolerates small errors in watering well, sometimes the leaves do not even lose turgor.
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Signs of water deficiency or excess in african violets
If the owners water the violet correctly at home:
- plates are always elastic;
- their color corresponds to the description of the variety;
- the plant does not appear depressed.
Novice growers often confuse overdrying and overflowing. In both cases, first, they lose their turgor (wither), then the leaves fall to the edge of the pot. To correctly identify the problem, you need to examine the root.
Signs of overdrying of african violets
If violets are rarely watered and not enough, there will be consequences:
- slow growth;
- flowers become smaller;
- in advanced cases, the leaves turn yellow;
- Saintpaulias get sick more often;
- in winter or with global dryness, they can die.
An earthen ball when the violet is poorly watered:
- moves away from the walls of the pot;
- turns to stone over time;
- water does not stay in the container, but simply flows into the pan;
- top dressing is not absorbed;
- the root dries.
What to do with overdried violets?
The hosts must act in the following sequence:
- Lower the pot into a bucket of warm (25-27 ° C) water half the height of the container.
- Soak lump. This usually takes 60-90 minutes.
- Let the liquid drain.
- Place the violet in a light shade.
- Cover the flower with plastic wrap.
Within a day, the plant will restore turgor. The leaves that were not saturated with moisture died. They are pinched off close to the base, the wounds are sprinkled with an antiseptic.
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Signs of waterlogged in african violet
When the African violet is constantly waterlogged, they do not remove water from the pan for a long time, there are no drainage holes in the pot:
- the soil turns sour;
- ceases to be loose, since all capillaries are filled with water;
- oxygen is not supplied to the roots;
- the underground part and the base of the outlet rot;
- the bush is dying.
There may be gnats in the pot, but this is not necessary.
What to do with african violet root rot?
Sometimes it is enough to pull the earthen ball out of the pot and dry it on the newspaper, and then return the flower to its place. Before that, it is recommended to smell it if it smells bad, then the consequences are more serious than they seem at first glance.
With a significant overflow at the roots, the color is brown, the peel from them easily peels off. Violet needs to be saved:
- Remove the substrate, gently wash off the remains with water.
- Cut off all rotten processes down to living tissue.
- Dip the roots for half an hour in a fungicide solution.
- Plant the violet in a small pot with light soil.
If the underground part is completely rotten, the top is cut off and rooted.
What kind of water do African violets need?
The water should be soft, clean, and contain a minimum amount of salts. It is useful for flower growers to know:
- Violets can be watered with rain or thaw only in ecologically clean regions. In industrial plants, ordinary tap water is cleaner.
- It is best not to use filters containing silver.
- In spring, during floods, industrial waste and other sewage enter the upper horizons. Therefore, more chlorine is added to tap water, and it is generally better not to think about the quality of a well or from a well. Additional cleaning required.
- Before watering the entire collection, it is better to test water from natural reservoirs or a well on 2-3 violets. It can be both very good and depressing of the culture.
Determination of water hardness
Potassium and phosphorus are poorly soluble in hard water, it salines, alkalizes the substrate, and indoor violets love slightly acidic. The numerical expression of the concentration of potassium and magnesium ions in the liquid is not necessary for flower growers to know. It is enough to understand that water is not suitable for watering Saintpaulias.
This is determined by the fact that a whitish bloom appears over time on the surface of the substrate and the walls of the pot. But this does not happen immediately, and the violet suffers.
You can focus on the following signs:
- spilled and dried liquid leaves white marks that are easy to wash off;
- kettles and pots in which unfiltered water is boiled are covered with limescale.
Water softening methods
The high peat substrate itself makes the liquid passing through it less rigid. If that’s not enough:
- the water is defended for a day, then drained from the sediment;
- passed through a filter;
- add 100 g of peat to a bucket of water;
- dissolve 3-4 g of citric acid in 10 l;
- 1/4 tablet of citropaque 5 l;
- they buy a special preparation in the garden center.
how to water african violets?
The culture is easier to tolerate short-term overdrying than waterlogging of the substrate.
Most often, they find out that it is time to water the violet by checking to what depth the substrate has dried out. But there are other, less reliable ways:
- the pot becomes light;
- the surface of dry soil is lighter than that of wet soil.
Violet watering rules:
- between irrigations, the soil should dry out by 0.5-1 cm, in winter without additional illumination, at temperatures below 18 ° C – up to 1.5 cm;
- blooming and actively growing bushes need more water;
- liquid should not fall on the leaves, especially in the center of the outlet;
- in summer it is better to water Saintpaulias in the evening, in winter – in the morning;
- if sciarids (mushroom gnats) appear, it means that the soil turns sour;
- temporary overdrying is less dangerous than waterlogging;
- the water should be soft, at room temperature or slightly higher.
Watering methods for african violet
In order for the violet to bloom well and be healthy, watering is needed correctly. The choice of method depends on the owners – if the leaves are elastic, the saintpaulia is healthy, develops well and blooms, nothing needs to be changed.
The most common way to water violets. In plants with large rosettes, the lower leaves are gently lifted, water is poured along the edge of the pot until it protrudes into the pan. After half an hour, the excess liquid must be removed.
It is important that the liquid does not get on the leaves or in the center of the outlet. It is especially dangerous for children to get wet often this ends in their decay and death.
One of the advantages of the method is that some of the salts are washed out from the substrate, which has a good effect on the state of the violet.
Water is poured until it stops absorbing, after half an hour, the remaining liquid is removed. Sometimes this method is recommended for mass watering, but only if the violets are in a large common pan, from which excess moisture can be quickly removed.
The pots are placed in wide low containers lined with special mats or chemically inert synthetic material. Violets are watered through them – moisture is distributed evenly, each bush drinks as much as it needs.
Advantages – convenience, time-saving, there is always high humidity around Saintpaulias. You can feed the violet at the same time, but the consumption of drugs will be higher. Disadvantages – about once a month, mats need to be washed from salts and dirt, periodically washed or replaced with new ones.
Wick-irrigated violets themselves regulate how much water to consume. When transplanting, a thick cord or thin cotton cord is passed through the drainage hole.
One end is curled around the bottom third of the pot, the other is long enough to reach the bottom of the water tank. This is usually a plastic cup or a cropped eggplant.
The liquid flows up the wick, without touching the bottom of the container with the violet, wets the substrate. The owners only need to control the water level, add fertilizers, and wash the containers monthly.
Wick watering violets require planting in a landless substrate. It is better to use peat with perlite.
The pot is placed in a bucket or other container with water so that the liquid reaches 1/4 of the height of the flowerpot. When the substrate is saturated with moisture and the surface becomes dark, the container is returned to its permanent place.
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Is it possible to spray violets with water?
Saintpaulias need at least 50% air humidity, but she does not like it when pubescent leaves are sprayed, especially flowers or the center of the rosette. This can lead to the decay of vegetative organs, stains that are difficult or impossible to remove will always remain.
Florists resort to other methods of increasing humidity:
- expanded clay or pebbles are placed on the pallet, regularly watered with water;
- place the pot in a pots, fill the gap with wet sphagnum;
- put bowls of water between the saintpaulias;
- buy a household humidifier.