• How Sharley divides an African Violet

    by  • July 10, 2011 • Summer • 3 Comments

    The popularity of African violets in the US began in the 1920s when the Armacost and Royston Nursery in Los Angeles began selling a number of easy to grow hybrids through the first retail store, Woolworth who began distributing the now famous violets nationwide. Their constant bloom and ability to thrive indoors continue their popularity today. There are African violet societies throughout the world.

    Sharley Meredith, of Oakhurst, CA, has the technique perfected for dividing African violets that have out grown their pots. This day Marcia Goodwin of North Fork brought her plant which needed to be divided.

    Sharley, the African Violet Queen
    This is the technique, used by Sharley, for dividing an African violet that has out grown its pot. It usually needs dividing because the plant it self has developed two or more crowns. Recently, during this demonstration, using Marcia Goodwin’s violet, there were four or five separate violets crowded in one pot! When dividing and repotting, you’ll be using an inner and outer pot with a cotton wick to bring water up to the plan.


    Tip: Sharley sets all her violets in an aluminum pan she fills with water. The wicks reach into the water and ‘water’ the violets. Her fantastic display of violets are in an east window that gets just a brief period of direct sun.

    Now take a look at your African violets and learn along with us. You may have more plants than you think!


    Sue Langley, a passionate gardener and photographer lives and gardens with her husband and Corgi, Maggie on 7 acres just south of Yosemite, Zone 7 at 3000 feet. She also manages the Flea Market Gardening Facebook page and website.

    3 Responses to How Sharley divides an African Violet

    1. July 14, 2011 at 10:18 am

      What an interesting post, Sue! Thank you! My Mum used to grow beautiful African Violets from rooted leaves. I have only one plant, but I’m now inspired to acquire a few more.

    2. Mary Ellen Smith
      August 5, 2011 at 6:39 am

      I divided one of my plants, now it looks wilted. Is this normal? This plant was beautiful and bloomed a lot, it was in a display given to me when my son passed away, so it means alot to me, help me if you can, thanks

      • August 6, 2011 at 6:56 am

        Hi Mary-Ellen, I talked to Sharley and she says you may have to take up the divisions and remove more of the outer leaves, scrape more of the ‘neck where they’re removed and apply more rooting compound. She says you may be having this problem because there is not enough good root to the divisions. She says try also rooting one or two healthy leaves by dipping the ends in rooting compoud and poking them into some good potting mix. Water as shown in the post using ziplock bags for the first two weeks. Good Luck!

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