The Q&A Archives: Dividing African Violets

Question: The African violets I received as a gift 2 years ago are in dire need of dividing. What is the procedure for this, and what size pot would you recommend for repotting the divisions? They are currently in 4-inch pots.

Answer: When new crowns form around the mother crown of an African violet, you can use a sharp knife to cut each of the little crowns away, making sure each crown has a good supply of roots attached. The new plants can be put into 2-inch pots containing a commercially prepared African violet potting mix, or you can make your own using 1 part sand, 2 parts loam and 2-3 parts peat moss. I'd recommend the commercial mix because it's sterilized and won't introduce disease organisms to your new plants. African violets bloom best when they're slightly pot-bound, so put the mother plant back into its original pot and put the new plants into 2-inch pots. They can be repotted when they grow too big for their homes.

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