Q&A – When To Disbud A Young Plant?


African Violet, Alliance, first flower

African Violet, Alliance, first flower


Karin asks Annie:

Q Hi Annie,

You said you leave your young plants in the solo cup until they bloom, so you know whether they will bloom true, before they take up too much space. When they do start to bloom though, do you just let them do their thing, or do you disbud all but one bloom stalk?

I have a plant of Alliance here, and whilst I want to disbud to get it to grow bigger, I also want to make sure it blooms true before it takes up too much real estate. It’s in a 3″ pot, and looks to be wanting to go into full bloom (has plenty more bloom stalks starting under the leaves).(Yes, it should be more variegated, it’s starting to show more, so i’ll be patient on that front).

I’m hoping to get it to grow to a decent size for our show in April. It sounds far off, but my standards tend to stay small, so i decided to disbud them all until they are bigger…

(8663) 09/27/1997
(D. Croteau)
Semidouble medium blue star/white and pink fantasy.
Variegated green, cream and pink.

A Karin,

To answer your question, I usually let the plantlet do a good first bloom, and then I disbud, repot and begin to grow it out.  A standard can take time to grow – I’ve shown then at about 1 year, but – to me – they don’t really come into their own until about the third year.

Your plant looks good  – cooler temps should help the variegation – and I can see that it wants to move on to a 4″ pot.  I hope it blooms true for you!

Hope this helps,

Annie  :-)