Why Is My African Violet Growing Straight Up

  • When African Violets are exposed to too little light, their leaves will curl or stretch upward.
  • The stems begin to lengthen and expand upward, as though seeking for the light.
  • Instead of growing flat as they normally would, the leaves are now also growing upward.
  • The result is a plant that is top-heavy with leaves and bottom-heavy with lengthy stalks.
  • African violet plants begin to develop their leaves upward when they are planted in low light conditions.
  • The leaves have a thin texture, a deep green hue, and fragile, lanky leaf stalks.
  • The outer leaf stems are covered by the rosette pattern of the inner leaves when a plant develops correctly.
  • In normal growing African Violets, the stems of the leaves are scarcely perceptible in this manner.
  • The stems, however, become clearly visible and appear “stretched and wider apart” when exposed to dim light.
  • Visit the blog post “Natural Light for African Violet Plants” for more advice on how to grow African violets in sunlight.

Why Do African Violet Leaves Curl

  • Naturally curled leaves can be found on several African violet plants, including the bustleback and Imps kinds. Visit the blog post “What Are The Different Leaf Types Of African Violet Plants? ” for additional details on the various African violet leaf types.
  • African violet leaves may curl or droop downward for a variety of reasons, including dry soil, root rot, a plant that is potted or compressed, excessive light, or freezing conditions.

What Are the Symptoms of Dry Soil on African Violet Leaves?

  • If the African Violet appears visually droopy, dull, or limp, it may be time to water the plant. The presence of enough water is indicated by the firmness, crispness, and shine of the leaves.
  • The African Violet has to be watered if the top soil is dry and the leaves are drooping.
  • Gently insert your finger into the soil (about 1/2 inch deep) to feel for dry soil. No watering is needed if a lot of the soil clings to your finger and feels damp. It’s time to water the African Violet, though, if your finger is clean and there aren’t many dry spots on it.
  • Do not overwater the soil; just water it when the soil is dry. Overwatering is highly dangerous for African violets because it can cause crown or root rot.
  • Visit the blog page “How To Water African Violet Plants? ” for additional details on how to water African violet plants.

What are the Symptoms of Root Rot on African Violet Leaves?

  • The bottom leaves’ stems will turn dark and mushy, and the leaves will appear to droop downward.
  • The leaves could also squish together.
  • The hue of the leaves will start to appear faded.
  • The leaves won’t be solid; instead, they’ll feel soft and droopy to the touch and appear wilted.
  • Visit the blog entry titled “Root Rot On African Violet Plants” for additional details on the treatment for root rot.

What are the Symptoms and Remedy of Root Bound Soil on African Violet Leaves?

  • The leaves begin to cling to the pot’s rim as they become limp and droopy.
  • When the entire soil surface area is densely covered with roots, the roots are growing out of the pot holes underneath the pot, and the roots are visible on the soil’s upper surface, the African violet plant is entirely root-bound.
  • African violets prefer to have their roots somewhat restricted, which encourages flowering.
  • When roots begin to protrude from the pot holes beneath the pot or when roots are visible above the soil’s surface, the plant is said to be “root bound.”
  • The roots won’t be able to absorb water and nutrients if the soil combination is old.
  • The overall health of the African violet plant and its leaves will be impacted over time by this.
  • It is time to repot the African Violet if it is root-bound.
  • Every six months, African violets should be re-potted in new soil and kept in the same size container.

How is an African violet straightened?

Every five to six months, or about twice a year, African violets should be repotted. When the plant has fully grown, this merely entails repotting it in a pot of the same size with some new soil. Use a pot no bigger than the plant’s root system at all times. This often refers to a pot no bigger than a 2 1/2 for minis and semiminis, and a pot around a 4 for standards. Your violet will eventually have lost (or had removed) its older, lower leaves, creating a “neck. Repotting is required to get rid of this.

With a first step, an African violet “neck. A “The neck is the trunk that resembles a palm tree and develops throughout time as the lower leaf rows are stripped away. The lowest row of leaves on a healthy violet should emerge from the trunk at soil level. The lowest row of leaves is well above the soil line and pot rim when there is a neck. This unattractive neck can be removed by repotting. The best results come from doing this frequently, roughly every 5 to 6 months.

Step 2: Remove the root ball’s bottom. Remove the plant from the pot and cut away the bottom of the root ball in a quantity equal to the length of the neck, for example, if the neck is half as long as the plant, cut away half of the root ball. Repotting is therefore best done on a regular basis, before the neck gets too long. For instance, in the most severe scenario, if a plant had a 2 neck, we would need to take 2 out of the root ball’s bottom. Nearly the entire root system must be cut out if the pot is only 2 1/4 deep! Repotting can be done with little to no root system removal and little to no negative consequences on the plant by doing it when the neck is still small.

Step 3: Replant the plant in the same size container. If the plant is mature, a larger pot is not necessary. The violet can now be put lower into the pot because a section of the root ball’s bottom has been cut away. The plant should be lowered until the bottom row of leaves is level with the pot’s rim (i.e. no neck will be visible).

Step 4: Include new dirt. Now that its lowest row of leaves is level with the pot rim, the violet should be lowered in its pot. Fill the pot with new dirt, filling the neck to the rim. New roots will grow into the extra soil from the neck.

The replanted violet is step five. After repotting is complete, the soil level and bottom leaves should be even with the pot rim and there shouldn’t be any visible necks. Give the plant a light watering and label the pot. This is crucial because the plant will need a little less water until it starts to grow new roots into the additional soil (it has a smaller root system). This is more likely to be the case the more extreme the repotting.

Other advice. The three most frequent reasons for ill violets among novice gardeners are probably improper pot size, bad soil, and too little repotting. Even though a tiny violet was utilized in this example, the same process applies to standard-sized types as well. Repotting doesn’t need entail placing violets in ever-larger pots; most standards (unless grown for show) are perfectly content in a 4 pot! Use only containers that are as big as the root system. The plant only benefits from adding soil if it can grow a root system big enough to use that dirt!

For the majority of growers, a very light, porous, soilless potting mix is strongly advised. When purchasing a commercial mix, consider the soil’s feel rather than the label. “The poorest soil combinations for violets are frequently African violet soils! Vermiculite and/or perlite should make up 1/3 to 1/2 of the mix in mixes with a light, frothy consistency. Do not mix soil that is heavy, black, or thick. A skilled gardener can produce stunning plants in nearly any environment, but a light, soilless mix is much more tolerant to over- or underwatering, infrequent repotting, and neglect.

How can you prevent leggy African violets?

African violets are beautiful indoor flowering plants. They bring delight and vivid colors indoors. Growing one is doable for both novice and expert gardeners.

They have certain watering and lighting needs, so they might be a little needy. As a result, African violets occasionally get “leggy.” Leggy is when a plant tip has new growth. The majority of the plant’s energy is diverted from the bottom by this new growth.

Grow lights or positioning the plant close to a thinly curtained window can provide the bright, indirect light that African violets need to thrive. Sometimes, gardeners mistakenly believe that indirect light is poor light. Your plant will develop longer stems as it reaches for light when it isn’t getting enough of it.

African violet leaves dislike becoming wet. To allow it to dry between waterings, the soil in your pot has to drain well. To maintain it, make sure to water the soil and not the plant. Leaves are more prone to mold, rot, and fungus growth if they remain damp. The blossoms will attempt to elude the fungus or mold by growing leggy.

The lowest leaves of African violets ultimately turn yellow and drop off the plant, leaving the other stalks barren. Plants naturally lose the rosette of leaves at the base as they get older. This may also make the plant appear leggy.

Repotting to give it a new home and fertilizing with Espoma’s Violet! liquid plant food are the best ways to deal with African violets that are too lanky. This will keep your plant from getting too leggy and encourage the growth of new leaves, which will also improve the appearance of your blooms’ hues.

Brown Spots on Leaves

African violets should never have brown stains on them. By generating root rot, overwatering damages the root system and isolates the plant from the supply of nutrients.

If you do not provide magnesium or nitrogen, the leaves of your African violets will become discolored with brown and yellow blotches.

Edema, which is caused by the plant taking too much water, can occasionally result from overwatering. The African violet’s leaf cells are harmed by drinking too much water.

If your African violet has edema, you will observe brown, wart-like areas close to the base of the leaves.

Remove any leaves that have brown blemishes. Sadly, once brown patches form on the leaves, they are permanently damaged. Your African Violet will be able to produce new, healthy leaves more quickly if you remove them.

Root Rot And Foul Smell From Soil

If the soil does not entirely dry out between waterings or if the drainage system is not working properly, the fungus that develops will rot the roots.

Before replanting the plant, remove it from the pot and clear away any rotting dirt. Examine the stems and roots after that. To guarantee that your plants have robust, healthy roots, remove any brown or mushy ones.

After cleaning out the contaminated regions, disinfect the remaining roots by soaking them in a fungicide solution.

Your African violet has to be repotted in a fresh, well-drained bed of potting soil. (New soil is preferred, although cleaning the current soil should be sufficient if Root Rot is mild.)

Time is running out for us! Acting quickly will increase your chances of preventing root rot because it spreads swiftly.

It’s a good idea to remove any leaves that have brown patches on them. Sadly, the leaves won’t be able to recover once they start to show brown stains.

Your African Violet will have an easier time growing new, healthy leaves if you remove them.

Crown Rot

Similar to how Root Rot is identified and handled, so is Crown Rot. Where the rot has taken hold is what distinguishes them most.

Any of the roots could develop root rot, which could cause either mild or major damage. A condition called “Crown Rot” attacks the system’s top-most roots.

To treat Crown Rot, complete the Root Rot treatment procedures and apply a fungicide to the root system. Be mindful that your plant could not survive if it has severe Crown Rot.

Mold Growing on Soil

Mold in the soil is a certain indication that your African violet is receiving too much water. The top soil layer will develop moldy white specks.

Your African violet won’t be in danger from this mold (or your family). However, it is still crucial to get rid of it right away.

The mold may be completely removed if you scrape off the top layer of soil. Hydrogen peroxide mixed with a dilution can also be used to eliminate the mold.

Use five parts water to one part hydrogen peroxide. Repotting is necessary if the mold grows below the surface of the soil.

Shriveled Appearance and Mushy Stems

You are overwatering your African violet if the stems are mushy or the plant has become shriveled. A vigorous, vibrant plant will have solid stems and appear powerful and robust. When you squeeze them, if the stem gives at all, there is a problem.

A fungal infection brought on by an excess of water is indicated by mushy stems. Another indication that your African violet has perished is a shriveled appearance. In both situations, cut off the infected parts, clean the plant, and let it air dry. (Referring to Iowa State University)


Three things can be inferred from an African violet that has withered. You are either not watering enough, watering too much, or there are bugs in your garden. Which one it is will be determined by the soil.

You are overwatering your African violet if it has wilted and the soil is moist. The African Violets can’t get the oxygen they require because this drowns the roots. After making any necessary repairs, let your African violet dry thoroughly.

Look for pests if your soil does not seem overly damp or dry. African violets are frequently attacked by mealybugs and cyclamen mites. Cleaning your leaves is necessary to get rid of bugs. (Source: University of Clemson)

Spraying neem oil or insecticidal soap on your leaves will smother the bugs.

If you have rubbing alcohol lying around your home, you can use it to clean each leaf of your African violet to get rid of mealybugs or cyclamen mites.

Yellow Leaves

Another indication of moisture stress from overwatering is yellow foliage. Remove any yellow leaves from your African violet plant before assessing the health of the remaining leaves.

You will need to take damage control measures if your leaves are yellow because it’s likely that your roots have rotted.

Wrinkled Leaves

Wrinkled leaves are a sign that your roots have been seriously harmed by over watering. If there are wrinkles, water cannot reach the plant tissue from the roots.

Examine your ancestry. White and hefty roots indicate good health. If your roots are mushy and brown, they must be removed. The majority of your roots may have decayed if the leaves are wrinkled.

It is worthwhile to clean and repot your roots if they are still healthy. Sadly, it is time to try again with a different African Violet if the roots all appear brown and mushy.

Curled Leaves

Overwatering is indicated by curled leaves. However, it’s also a sign that your African Violet is under stress due to the water’s temperature.

Your African violet’s roots will become chilled if you water with cold water. The leaves begin to curl downward as a result. The best water to use is at room temperature because it lessens the possibility of any temperature shock.