I just dont inderstand what a sucker is?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

trace00969April 16, 2007

I have read and read, I have checked out rachels reflections, and her picture, and the other picture on this forum and I still dont get it.

I see new leaves in these pics, but i do not see where they grow from.

I see an AV to grow like this......leaves grow from soil, as do flower pods,, does a sucker grow from the soil, or is it like a whole new growth on a leaf stem or flower stem?

Is it a cluster of small leaves that will grow together from the soil? I have no idea what I should be looking for.

Now here is the pic i found of a sucker, what am I supposed to be looking at here?? From Linked Pics

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robitaillenancy1(zone 5)

Do you see the four smal leaves tucked up under the top leaf. That's a sucker.

A sucker is a three or four leaved growth often found on the main trunk in between leaf stems. With most AVs a sucker drains the energy from the mother plant. And it messes up the symmetry, the wheel-like roundness of the plant.

So we would take a sharp object such as a pencil and gouge out that sucker. When planted it will make another plant just like the mother plant.

African violet trailers have many suckers or crowns and thats what makes the plant trail instead of making it round like a wheel.

Nancy

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 2:32AM
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larry_b(Zone5/CO)

Hi,

First, I think it is very important to give credit to from where this picture was taken. This picture is from Rachel's Reflections.

OK. I have taken the picture that you displayed from Rachel's Reflections and tried to show where various parts of the plant are. We are looking at the side view of an African violet. The red arrow points to the crown of the mother plant. The white circle contains the leaves of the sucker. We are looking directly at the top of the sucker. The blue arrow points to the crown or middle of the sucker. Note that the sucker is growing out of the side of the violet stem. Remember we are looking at the side of the mother plant and at the top of the sucker.

I hope this helps,

Larry

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 2:54AM
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trace00969

I give all credit for the pic to Rachels reflection site, its the best pic out there......ok so....I see the sucker, so would the base of this be attached to a leaf stem?? Theorectically I could pull the one leaf and the whole sucker would come with the leaf??

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 12:38PM
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trace00969

Ok, so here are my two AV's, brand new, please help me determine if they have suckers. I see new leaves and flowers, but I still dont get the sucker thing, maybe these violets are just too advanced for me....lol. Thanks

Tracy

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 1:26PM
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larry_b(Zone5/CO)

Hi,

Is the sucker attached to a leaf stem? No, the sucker is attached to the stem of the violet. The only way to get rid of the sucker is to either cut it out (assuming you want to save it) or pull off all of its leaves and take a sharp instrument and scratch a little bit in the very center or crown of the sucker as Nancy suggested.

I have looked at your two pictures and will comment on the top picture. I suspect that there is a sucker behind the leaf pointed to by the blue arrow. On a standard African violet all of the leaves grow out from the center or crown of the violet in a Rosetta pattern. The leaf that is pointed to by the white arrow is growing in the opposite direction from the crown of the mother plant. That is why I suspect that there is a sucker behind the leaf pointed to by the blue arrow. Suckers will have its own crown and its own Rosetta pattern.

On the second picture I suspect that there is at least one sucker if not two, but I could be wrong. The problem is that the picture is too close and I am having a little trouble seeing the whole plant. If you are able to see the sucker on the top plant you probably will be able to figure out if there are any on the bottom plant. If you still can't see the sucker just let the plant grow larger and the sucker will develop into its own plantlet attached to the stem of the mother plant and then you will be able to see it.

I hope this helps,

Larry

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 5:02PM
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laneyn

Hi Trace,

I am new to this forum and trying my hand at AV's again...I have killed a few in the past I'm sorry to say but with the info on this site I feel confident that I can succeed. I have to agree with Larry that the pictures are a bit close up to really tell but I definitely believe that white arrow is pointing to a sucker leaf. I had the same problem you are having when I got a new AV a few weeks ago. I actually thought the crown was a sucker and almost chopped it off but decided to do a little more research. I too had a problem really understanding the sucker in the RR picture but after I bought a few more AV's and definitely found one with not 1 but 2 suckers it all became clear. Here is the best way I can tell you to try and understand it. Stand over the top of your AV and look down on it if you see a clump of small leaves growing to the side(leaning so to speak) that is a sucker then check the same way from the side of your plant. I wish I could be of more help to you and I hope I didn't make matters worse but I will tell you this...after you find your 1st one you will definitely know them from then on out.

LN

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 6:26PM
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bspofford

Larry, what a clever guy you are. How did you add the arrows, etc.? What a great teaching tool.

Barbara

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 6:27PM
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larry_b(Zone5/CO)

Hi Barbara,

Lol. The magic of Photoshop.

Larry

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 6:38PM
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trace00969

Okay, maybe I got it......here is the pic of what I cut off from the mama white plant.....as for the pink one, I think I found one, again here is a pic......I really hope all the pics help someone else out because there is only the one pic on RR's with a pic. So let me know if this is a sucker too....Thanks

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 8:29PM
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lilypad22(7)

What a great job with the pictures and arrows! It made it so clear to understand. If you leave the suckers on they will eventually grow big like the mother plant, you can see there would not be space for all those leaves of two or three plants. I have an older plant I left the suckers on before I knew to take them off and it has become a tri-plant, shaped like a pyramid. It has three equal sides, three crowns. I could now take them off, re-root the crowns and have three separate plants, but it's been growing this way for so long and actually looks pretty neat, it's green/white streaked varigated with plain single purple flowers, so I'm just going to keep it like it is for now. It doesn't bloom as often as it would if it were a single crown, but I'm keeping it for the foilage, not it's flowers. One day the neck will grow too long and the plant will start dying back and then I will re-root the crowns separately.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2007 at 9:10AM
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larry_b(Zone5/CO)

Hi trace,

Congratulations! I think you've figured it out. Yes, that is a sucker in the picture.

Larry

    Bookmark   April 17, 2007 at 6:04PM
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holyman

Yea, thanks for all those explanations of what a sucker is. I am glad to know that a sucker is more than what I see in the morning mirror. Was very helpful

    Bookmark   April 17, 2007 at 9:52PM
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rubyfruit(7 - New York)

I've been having the same problem trying to figure out what a sucker looks like... this post (& Larry's diagrams) have been very helpful... thank you!

    Bookmark   October 21, 2007 at 8:16PM
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