I bought my first pot of African violet a few months ago. While the newly acquired African violet is blossoming beautifully, I didn’t aware but only until another gardener pointed out to me that my African violet actually had multiple crowns.
As a curious gardening novice who like to try different things, I decided to take up this challenge and separate the crowns. It has been almost three months since I separated the crowns. Seeing that the separated crowns of my African violets are now growing healthily, I consider this “operation” as a successful one. And here, let me share with you how I did it.
This was my African violet three months ago. As you can see, the plant was very messy, jam-packed with its leaves shooting to all directions.
First, I allowed my African violet to dry slightly so the compost was loose and the leaves were rubbery. This helps preventing the roots and leaves from breaking easily when one tries to separate the crowns.
I picked out all the unhealthy leaves from the plant. You can also do this after removing the plant from its pot.
Then I removed the plant from its pot, shook away any excess compost and exposed the root ball.
After some careful examination, I found two distinct root systems. With a clean sharp knife, I cut between the root systems. I feel like a doctor doing a surgery.
Since there were existing roots on the crowns, both of them could be placed directly into fresh compost. If the crown is an offshoot without its own root system, then it is better to first be placed in water to permit root development.
The two African violets, which I have separated there months ago, are growing strong and healthily now.