Back in August I had posted about the soil fungus problem that I was having with propagating African violets. The good news is that a spray or two of a copper fungicide took care of the problem and didn’t cause any harm to the plantlets.
In late summer I was able to remove the small plantlets and pot them into individual pots. The challenge was finding pots. African violets can be a little temperamental and you don’t want to put them in too large of a pot. The roots need to be able to fill the soil quickly or you can run into disease problems. I needed some small pots but small pots are hard to find.
Then I learned a trick for the Facebook group African Violet Nerds. Someone had posted that they use small plastic cups for the initial potting of the plantlets. I found a bag of cups at the grocery store that were 3 fl. ounce and seemed perfect for my violets. Plus I got 150 of them for less than $2 – I could never have found 1 or 2 inch pots at that price! All I had to do was snip a couple of holes in the bottom of each cup and I had all the pots I needed.
After the fungus problem, I was also searching for a potting mix in which to grow the plants. I ended up using three parts Optimara African violet potting mix with one part perlite. Optimara’s a big violet grower so I knew I could trust their soilless mix. I just found it to be a little to heavy for my liking so I added the perlite and have been pleased with the results.
After planting up the plantlets, I wanted to give them a humid location for a few weeks until they started to establish themselves. The best mini greenhouse I could find was a large plastic baby spinach container. The height was perfect and the lid allowed me to adjust it so that there would be some increased humidity but also airflow.
I didn’t lose one plantlet and I haven’t had any more fungus problems. Each plant grew and right now they’re starting to bloom. I’ll share the results of this process in the next post.