June 14, 2013

Excellence in African Violets

I LOVED this article! There were many things mentioned in the article that I do as part of 'Trusted Routine', and that I think are very important! :)

"In Search of Excellence" by Betty Tapping. Betty has been a long-time member and friend of Lakeshore African Violet Society. Although she has retired from growing African violets she still keeps up her connections with our society and still lives in our community. This article will help growers achieve excellence in their plants with tips from Betty, an excellent grower and exhibitor of African violets.

This article has all the basics, although they aren't laid out as 1, 2, and 3.
Do what Betty says, and you will have nice show-quality plants AND also be organized and neat!!!

The article is deceptively simple, and you might overlook these important things!  So, allow me to give you a guided tour of the article!

First paragraph:  Betty learn from others' wisdom, but allow yourself to experiment and learn from your mistakes!  I would put this first in my article also:  Learning, the easy way from someone else, or the hard way by trial and error, is the FUN of this African violet hobby!

Next in the article, Betty explains she always has plants at various stages of growth:  from leaf pots with babies, young starters, mid sized pots, and larger show plants.  This lets her use her space better.  I agree!!!!  This is one way I can list 149 varieties I have in my house, and have at least three plants of each variety!  I do this!!!!

Betty says pot size is important.  To me, pot size used is VERY important.  Some varieties have smaller root systems, and thrive better in smaller pots.  And pot size is most important in very small babies as you transplant from the mama leaf and again when the plant is mature such as more than 18 months old.  I have certain pots that are shaped and sized just right, and if I have a small baby of a tempermental variety, I always put them in my 'good pots'!

"Some plants do perform better than others."  NOTE THIS!  Many people say:  my violet isn't blooming.  The first thing I want to know is the variety name. Sometimes it is a plant that takes longer to rebloom, or doesn't do as well in windowlight, or high temperatures.  Some hybrids will do better than others.  Read Betty's paragraph in the article.

I could go on and on.... each point in the article is a good one.  Each sentence had something that I found made African violet growing easier, better, or more fun!

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