Do you have a large African violet that you’d like to propagate to other locations later this year? Based on my experience, it can be done successfully with the aid of leaf cuttings. I typically like to complete such tasks at the start of the summer season. However, you could technically propagate African violets through the early fall. Here’s how to do it:
Obtain Healthy Leaf Cuttings
Start by filling a small container with a peat moss and builder’s sand mixture. You can also opt to use perlite or vermiculite instead. Next, make a few shallow planting holes into the potting soil’s surface with a wooden skewer. The holes should be evenly spaced and allow plenty of space in between each leaf cutting. Keep going by cutting a few healthy leaves, each with a 1.5 inch stalk, from your African violet. Just make sure that you avoid damaging the leaves’ stalks and trim their ends when you are done. Ideally, each stalk’s cut end should be straight and clean.
Plant the Leaf Cuttings
Next, carefully insert one stalk, cut end down, into the planting holes. Half of the cutting’s stalk should be above the soil line. In addition, the leaf itself needs to be positioned in a way that prevents it from touching the potting mixture. Continue by flooding the container with water and letting it drain out. Then, without disturbing the leaf cuttings, cover the top of the pot with a plastic sandwich bag. Proceed by securing the plastic sandwich bag to the container with a large rubber band.
Afterward, place the pot in a warm area of your home. I tend to place the cuttings near a south or east facing window because of the light levels. Those areas tend to be mildly sunny. You will also want to check on your African violet cuttings daily to make sure that the soil is still moist. In addition, you’ll want to remove any condensation that forms on the inside of the plastic sandwich bag. Otherwise, you could end up inadvertently killing the plants. Based on my experience, roots and new leaves will start to form on the original cutting’s stem in about 6 to 10 weeks.
Transplant the Leaf Cuttings
Once that happens, wait about 3 months to give the cuttings’ roots time to strengthen. Then carefully extract the rooted cuttings from your starter container and transplant them into individual pots that have been filled with a humus rich, sterilized potting soil mixture. I have found that at this point, it is best to keep the new African violets in a warm, draft free and partially shaded area for another month. Afterward, your African violets may be moved to a more sunlit locale and monitored for the best results.
Source: Personal Experience
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