You love your African violets and you want them to look pretty for as long as possible. This is why it’s so discouraging when the plant is having problems.
Have you noticed that something is wrong with the leaves as of late? Perhaps you’ve seen that the African violet has mushy leaves.
What would cause this to happen? Is this a common problem or is it an indication of some type of plant disease?
Read on to learn about African violets with mushy leaves. This will give you a better understanding of the situation so that you can make good choices to protect the plant.
What Causes Mushy Leaves in African Violets?
The most common cause of mushy leaves in African violets is watering the plant too much. If your African violet has mushy leaves it’s very likely that you’re watering it much more than you should.
Sometimes people fail to understand that watering a plant too much is bad. When you water a plant too often it will essentially wind up drowning.
The plant cannot handle all of the water that you’re giving it. The soil doesn’t have time to dry out between watering sessions and the plant is going to suffer as a result.
Generally, when African violets are being watered too much they will show signs such as drooping. Sadly, drooping is also a sign of the plant not being watered enough, and this causes people to make mistakes.
Another sign to look out for involves the plant being softer than usual. When the plant starts to get soft it’s a sign that you’re watering it more than you should.
If you continue down this path the leaves will start to feel mushy. Eventually, the plant will experience root rot and it’s likely that it will die.
Watering Too Much Kills Plants
Remember that watering too much is potentially deadly to plants. Some plants do indeed like to be watered fairly often, but not all of them need to be watered all the time.
Most plants need to be given a bit of time to dry out before being watered again. It’s always appropriate to check the soil to see if the plant is ready to be watered or not.
Watering on a strict schedule is never recommended. For example, you shouldn’t water a plant every two weeks at exactly the same time without checking the soil.
Various factors can make it so the plant might need to be watered earlier or later. The weather plays a big role in this.
Plants will dry out faster when they’re exposed to bright sunlight. If the temperature is high, that will help the plants to dry out faster.
Cooler weather makes it so plants need to be watered a bit less often. Keep all of this in mind so you can avoid making mistakes and do a better job of keeping your plants alive.
How to Water African Violets
It’s best to be careful when watering African violets. There are a few things you want to avoid doing so you don’t harm the plant.
First, it’s imperative to water the plant from the bottom. You want to avoid getting water on the foliage since this can cause issues with rot as well.
Sometimes excessive moisture on the foliage will lead to issues with mildew, mold, or fungus. This is easy enough to avoid by simply watering at the base of the plant.
It’s recommended to use room-temperature water when watering your plants. Also, be sure to use water that doesn’t contain chemicals.
African violets aren’t so sensitive that tap water can’t be used, but some tap water contains more chemicals than others. To err on the side of caution, it’s better to use distilled water or to leave tap water out in the sun for 24 hours before watering the plant.
This allows all chemicals to leave the water so that it can be used safely. Even if this is merely a safety precaution, it’s best to continue to do this to avoid problems.
African violets should only be watered when the soil has dried out. The soil around the roots should be totally dry before you water the plant so you don’t have any problems with root rot.
When you’ve confirmed that the soil is dry, go ahead and water the plant thoroughly. You can water at the base of the plant or you can simply place the pot in water and let it soak up from the bottom for no more than thirty minutes.
African Violets Are Easy to Care For
After reading the information above, you might be worried that African violets are hard to care for. This isn’t the case at all.
These are simple houseplants that can be cared for even if you don’t have much experience. The only thing you need to be careful to do is to water the plant properly.
So long as you check the soil with your fingers before watering it’ll be easy to get good results. The plant will continue to look great and you’ll love having it in your home.
African violets have a reputation for being good houseplants for beginners, but they aren’t invincible. They will die if you neglect them, but they can be good for beginners to learn about the responsibility of caring for plants.
You just need to handle the basics well and these plants will look amazing. They’re among the easiest flowering plants that beginners can purchase.
So don’t hesitate to buy African violets if you’re worried about caring for them. It’s not that difficult and the plants are truly stunning additions to your home.
African Violet Light Requirements
It’s good to give African violets the right amount of sunlight. This will help the plant to dry out properly between watering sessions.
Ideally, you want to find a spot in your home where the plant will receive bright indirect sunlight. Direct sunlight is too harsh for the plant since it will scorch its leaves.
You can filter the sunlight through sheer curtains or use some other method. Find a good spot where the plant can receive indirect sunlight and it’ll thrive in your home.
The plant does require a lot of light to be able to bloom. Since this is a pretty flowering plant it’s wise to give it the sunlight that it needs.
Doing so will help the plant to look its best. Also, it’ll help the plant to dry out properly so you won’t have to worry about mushy leaves.
Now you have a much better idea of what causes mushy leaves in African violets. When your African violets have mushy leaves it’s an indication that you’ve been watering the plant too much.
These plants are sensitive to being watered too much so you must be careful. Allow the soil to dry out between watering sessions and always remember to check it with your fingers before proceeding.
Give the plant enough water without going overboard. Be sure to water the plant from the bottom as well so you can avoid getting the foliage wet.
The plant also does best in bright indirect sunlight. Giving it enough sunlight helps it to dry out well so you can water it without having to worry so much.
Use this information to your advantage. You shouldn’t have a hard time caring for African violets now that you know what to do.
Growing up with a mom who filled her home (inside and out) with all sorts of plants, Lisa got her start in gardening at a young age. Living now on her own with a home and yard full of plants (including an indoor greenhouse), she shares all the gardening tips she’s gained over the years.