How And What To Feed Violets With? Mineral And Organic Fertilizers For Saintpaulias. Preparation Of Solutions. Photo

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How And What To Feed Violets With? Mineral And Organic Fertilizers For Saintpaulias. Preparation Of Solutions. Photo
How And What To Feed Violets With? Mineral And Organic Fertilizers For Saintpaulias. Preparation Of Solutions. Photo
Video: How And What To Feed Violets With? Mineral And Organic Fertilizers For Saintpaulias. Preparation Of Solutions. Photo
Video: Watering | Fertilizing African Violet using Miracle Gro houseplant fertilizer 2023, February
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Favorite Saintpaulias have not only a special appearance, but also a very specific character. The cultivation of this plant bears little resemblance to the classic indoor crop care. And even relatives of the Uzambar violets from among the Gesnerievs require a slightly different approach. Irrigation is often referred to as the “weirdest” point of care for violets, which prefer non-standard watering to the classic method. But the approach will have to be changed in feeding. The rapid growth of rosettes and abundant flowering lead to the fact that all violets are extremely dependent on the frequency of water procedures and the composition of fertilizers. And mistakes with them are absolutely unforgivable.

How and what to feed violets with?
How and what to feed violets with?

Content:

  • Features of care for Saintpaulias
  • When to feed violets?
  • "Schemes" of dressings for Saintpaulias
  • Types of complex mineral fertilizers for Saintpaulia
  • Organic fertilizing for Saintpaulias
  • Non-concentrated feeding is always better
  • Fertilization rules for violets

Features of care for Saintpaulias

Usambara violets, or Saintpaulias, are compact plants, strikingly decorative, with equally beautiful rosettes of velvety, pleasant to the touch leaves and unique flowering. Collected in shields, shining pearlescent, simple, semi-double or double flowers create a unique "second tier" above the rosettes.

Saintpaulias are small, medium, and relatively large, neat and almost loose, strict and extravagant. There are no restrictions either in color, or in the shape of the leaves, or in the peculiarities of the structure of the flower in the varieties of this plant, numbering in the hundreds. But, despite all its diversity, Saintpaulias are always Saintpaulias.

The requirements for soil, replanting, lighting, temperatures, and care are always the same for them. And plants cannot be called super-demanding or completely non-capricious: uzambar violets should be perceived not as complex, but as special plants that require a non-standard approach.

It is no coincidence that for all Saintpaulias care is considered more important than the growing conditions: if they can adapt to the difference in light and even temperatures, then improper care for these plants is almost always extremely traumatic. At best, Saintpaulias lose their decorative effect, at worst they die. Moreover, it is worth fearing any extremes - both insufficient and too diligent and careless care. Violets are equally demanding on the two main "points" in the program of regular care - watering and feeding.

Saintpaulias are considered indoor plants, very dependent on the composition of the dressings and the schedule for their introduction. The increased dependence on the fertilization schedule in favorite violets is influenced by two factors - a prolonged growing season and a rapid depletion of the substrate.

Prolonged growing season, often a complete lack of dormancy and flowering almost all year. Saintpaulias are not only abundant flowering plants, but also almost never dormant. Many bright and beloved varieties, with proper care, bloom for almost 10-11 months, and the need for feeding them, unlike many crops for which fertilizers are applied only in spring and summer, also persists almost all year round.

Rapid depletion of the substrate. Saintpaulias are usually grown in small containers and even for their fairly compact root system, the volume of soil to provide all the nutrients the plant needs is not enough. The plants will not bloom until the thin roots fill the entire earthy ball. Therefore, it makes no sense to increase the volume of containers for them. As well as greatly increase the frequency of transplants: unlike many indoor crops, Saintpaulias are most often transplanted annually. In extreme cases - once every 6 months, if the roots have absolutely no space for development.

Even with this growing strategy, the need for feeding will be high. The nutrient reserves of a standard Saintpaulia pot usually last only 2 months.

Violets bloom almost all year round, so you need to feed them not only in spring and summer, but also in winter
Violets bloom almost all year round, so you need to feed them not only in spring and summer, but also in winter

When to feed violets?

If ordinary indoor crops are fed mainly in spring and summer, taking a break in feeding for almost six months, then violets are fed as much as they need - starting with the transplant procedure with a small "adaptation" period and until the end of flowering.

Feeding for Saintpaulias is influenced not only by the phase of their development. How often and how fertilizers are applied for these indoor babies should depend on several more factors:

  • lighting;
  • air temperature (feeding for Saintpaulias should be stopped when the air temperature drops to 16-17 degrees and below, because the development of the plant and the processes of absorption of macro- and microelements from the substrate in the cold completely stop);
  • matching the size and shape of the container to the plant itself;
  • quality and regularity of watering.

For almost all violets, except for those that clearly stop growing, feeding should be carried out all year round, changing the concentration during periods of seasonal reduction in lighting and falling temperatures.

"Schemes" of dressings for Saintpaulias

The classic feeding scheme for Saintpaulias with continuous or almost continuous flowering:

  • in March, after transplantation, fertilizers for Saintpaulias are applied once every 2 weeks;
  • in April, feeding is carried out with a frequency of 1 time in 10 days;
  • in May, the frequency of feeding is maintained once every 9-10 days;
  • throughout the summer, feeding for Saintpaulias is carried out weekly;
  • in September, the frequency of feeding is reduced to 1 time in 10 days;
  • in October, feeding is carried out 2-3 times a month or the frequency is maintained 1 time in 10 days;
  • in November, feeding is carried out 1 time in 2 weeks;
  • from December to transplanting at the end of February or March, 1 feeding per month is carried out for Saintpaulias.

There are simpler strategies for feeding violets:

  1. Classic dressing. Fertilizers can be applied starting from the third week after transplanting until the end of flowering with the same frequency 2 times a month, with a break for a period after flowering and before transplanting.
  2. Constant feeding. Low-concentrated fertilizer solutions are applied constantly, carrying out top dressing along with watering (in fact, instead of it). In this case, the dosage is reduced by 6-8 times compared to the usual one. Typically this strategy is used for the wick irrigation and feeding method.

If the Saintpaulias fade earlier, do not bloom at all, the conditions for their maintenance differ from the optimal and recommended ones, the frequency of fertilizing should be changed downward. If the plants are in supplementary lighting, they are left with the frequency of top dressing in the summer or early autumn, prolonging the period of more active care.

Today on sale you can buy special fertilizers for Saintpaulias - liquid, dry, in the form of granules or sticks (prolonged action)
Today on sale you can buy special fertilizers for Saintpaulias - liquid, dry, in the form of granules or sticks (prolonged action)

Features of feeding after transplant

You should not start immediately after transplanting feeding for violets. Of course, it must be remembered that 2 months after transplantation, the supply of nutrients needed by Saintpaulia for normal development is almost completely depleted.

But plants begin to experience a lack of macro- and microelements much earlier, therefore, feeding is introduced into the violet care program a few weeks after transplantation. But not before the plant has adapted and started to grow. Usually, violets begin to feed 2-4 weeks after changing the soil and container, but this rule has its exceptions.

As in any other point of care for uzambar violets, you always need to focus on the state of the plant itself and how it adapts in a new container and soil. If the violets are weakened, do not show signs of rooting, the transplant was urgent, associated with the neglected state of the plant or the consequences of improper watering, and in all cases where there is a suspicion of being damaged by pests or diseases, feeding should not be carried out before making sure that it is fully restored plants.

If problems with Saintpaulias arise in the active phase of growth, feeding must be stopped before the threat to the plant itself disappears and it does not start actively growing again.

Types of complex mineral fertilizers for Saintpaulia

Usambara violets are one of the most common indoor plants. And it will not be difficult to find special fertilizers for them, intended for Saintpaulias or at least the Gesnerievs. After all, they are in the line of products of each manufacturer.

For Saintpaulias, it is always worth choosing fertilizers of "narrow specialization". Even in preparations for flowering indoor crops, the ratio of macro- and microelements differs from the ideal for this unusual plant.

Fertilizers for variegated or unusually colored violets should be selected more strictly: even among special fertilizers for Saintpaulias, it is worth choosing preparations with a low nitrogen content for the manifestation of bright patterns and variegated contrasts on the leaves.

It is not so easy to determine the type and form of fertilizer for Saintpaulias. Fertilizers for uzambar violets are of 3 types:

  • liquid;
  • dry;
  • long-acting fertilizers in the form of granules or sticks.

If possible, you should always choose liquid fertilizers for Saintpaulias. It is not only a matter of convenience, ease of dosage, but also much greater safety: fertilizers are distributed evenly during watering, there is less risk of burns resulting from the fact that fertilizers accumulate in large quantities in certain parts of the substrate.

Dry fertilizers also dissolve in water, but more time will have to be spent on creating "working" solutions. Not all fertilizers will dissolve in the same way, therefore it is difficult to talk about the same homogeneous composition of fertilizers and their distribution in water. But if you prepare the working compositions in advance, mix them thoroughly before watering, adhere to general rules, you can achieve the same efficiency as when using liquid fertilizers.

Preparations with a small, powdery, homogeneous texture will suit Saintpaulias much better, because they dissolve more evenly.

The use of any prolonged-release fertilizers for violets is undesirable. Both the granules that mix with the substrate and the sticks that are buried in the soil during transplanting simplify maintenance, but for such sensitive and delicate plants, they can be detrimental. Even with the choice of the safest preparations and their correct use, nutrients will penetrate into the soil unevenly, individual areas with a high concentration of macro- and microelements will lead to partial or complete damage to the roots.

Immediately after transplanting feeding for violets, you should not start
Immediately after transplanting feeding for violets, you should not start

Organic fertilizing for Saintpaulias

Despite the fact that uzambara violets react positively to organic fertilizers, it will not be possible to grow saintpaulias only on them. For Saintpaulias, it is permissible to alternate mineral and organic fertilizing, but the best care strategy is to replace regular fertilizing with organic feeding 2-4 times per season. And the fertilizers themselves must be chosen carefully.

Saintpaulias from organic fertilizers can be fed:

  • dry mullein (manure, bird droppings);
  • dry vermicompost;
  • microbiological (EM) drugs;
  • purchased organic fertilizers (humisol, etc.) for Saintpaulias.

Non-concentrated feeding is always better

The correct choice of fertilizer concentration is a key factor in the care of any Saintpaulia. The slightest excess of permissible dosages and contact of roots with concentrated preparations cause burns and serious damage to the roots. It is better to feed Saintpaulias with non-concentrated fertilizers than to take risks with increasing dosage.

The standard for any saintpaulias is the dosage of complex mineral fertilizers specially designed for a plant, containing both macro- and microelements:

  • 1 g of dressings diluted in 1 liter of quality water for irrigation with a frequency of 15 to 20 days (or the full dose indicated by the manufacturer);
  • 1 g per 2 liters of water for fertilizing with a frequency of 7-10 days (or half the recommended portion reduced by half);
  • 1 g per 3 liters of water for fertilizing with a frequency of 5-6 days (or three times the recommended rate reduced);
  • 1 g per 6-8 liters with constant fertilization along with watering (the dosage is reduced by 5-8 times).

For organic fertilizers, the dosage should be determined by the type of fertilizer and its characteristics. Purchased preparations, especially special fertilizers for Saintpaulias, are used in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations.

Microbiological preparations are diluted at a concentration of 50 ml per 10 l of water. Dry humus is used in the form of mulch on the soil, evenly scattering about 2 tablespoons per plant on the surface, followed by abundant watering.

Mullein, manure, bird droppings are first diluted to a concentrate (200 g of dry manure or 50 g of bird droppings per 10 L of water with the addition of 1 g of copper sulfate), the fertilizer is kept for 1 month and then 100 g is used per 3 L of water.

The frequency of feeding saintpaulias is influenced by both lighting and air temperature
The frequency of feeding saintpaulias is influenced by both lighting and air temperature

Fertilization rules for violets

Regularity and consistency

It is important to feed Saintpaulias evenly - systemically, regularly, with equal or evenly varying intervals between treatments. Even if the plant is in a depressed state or there are certain difficulties with its flowering, it is better to carry out top dressing regularly, but regulate their composition, concentration, time, rather than refuse dressing.

Only if we are talking about diseased and unrooted plants or violets affected by an excess of nutrients, it is worth stopping feeding altogether.

Compliance with irrigation

The fertilization method should be the same as the usual irrigation method - wick, submerged, or classic neat top irrigation.

Top dressing only on wet soil

Despite the fact that fertilizers for violets are usually applied along with water for irrigation, feeding on a dry substrate is a big mistake. Like many plants sensitive to sudden changes in conditions, prone to root burns, uzambara violets require the most careful approach to the procedure for feeding and fertilizing pre-moistened or constantly moist soil.

To avoid the risk of burns or any damage to the roots due to inaccuracy, the violets are first watered with a small amount of water, restoring the stable moisture habitual to the plant, and only then top dressing is applied. To avoid overflow and excessive soil moisture, it is convenient to fertilize 1 day after watering.

The best dressing is evening

Any violets, even those grown in soft and diffused lighting, respond better to feeding if they are carried out in the evening.

Optimum temperature of solutions

It is better to strictly control the temperature of fertilizer solutions for Saintpaulias. For uzambara violets, watering with cold water is contraindicated, and if fertilizers are added to the water, you should make sure that its temperature is equal to or 1-2 degrees higher than the temperature of the substrate and the air in the room. You should not feed the violets with too warm solutions: an increased temperature is usually associated with an increased risk of root burns.

Foliar feeding of violets can be carried out only with the help of fog sprayers and very carefully
Foliar feeding of violets can be carried out only with the help of fog sprayers and very carefully

Foliar dressing for violets

Only with sufficient experience and the presence of "foggy" sprayers can foliar feeding of violets be carried out. They are especially good for ornamental foliage varieties. But with such dressings, you need to be very careful, avoiding waterlogging of the leaves and using them only on healthy, well-groomed, clean plants.

The concentration of fertilizers is reduced by 2 times compared to root dressings and these procedures are carried out only in the evening. Foliar subcortexes are replaced with the usual ones no more often than 3-4 times in the spring and summer.

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