For the first time, I'm seeing what appear to be seed pods on a couple of my AVs. How can I tell for sure and, if they are pods, how will I know when they are ripe?
One way you will know that they are seed pods is that they won't wilt and go away. I have never grown seed pods to the point where one has viable seeds. I've heard it takes somewhere between six and nine months. You will know when they are completely ripe when they become dry and crisp and the pod will open to disburse the seeds. It has always sounded fun to me but I never wanted to wait that long. I wound up buying seed through a mail-order company and planted that instead. It is fun to grow seed from African violets at least once in one's life. I may do it again sometime. Who knows. Right now I am growing other kinds of geseriads and barely have room for them.
Good luck. I hope you have a viable pod.
Here is a link to Rachel's reflections. Go down to hybridizing and she explains the whole process and what to do with the seeds afterwards.
Here is a link that might be useful: Rachels Reflections
If you are seeing seed pods on your violets and haven't pollinated them youself, I suggest that you do a careful check for thrips. Generally violets don't set pods by themselves. They need help and thrips very often do the job.
Fred in NJ
Here's what they look like. I'm not sure they are pods.
Here is a link that might be useful:
The picture that you have looks more like unfertilized ovaries. Seed pods are a little more plump and swollen.
If you are looking at the two little green lumps attached to the stem in the center of the picture, they aren't seed pods. They are what is left of the blossom after the flower has fallen off. You can take off the entire stem or petiole when this happens. You will get no more bloom from that bloomstalk.
Fred in NJ