I'm looking to increase my AV collection, so I thought I would ask all you wonderful people who hang out here what your favorite AV is and why it's your favorite.
Hands down, Yukako. It's a very striking chimera with medium purple star flowers with green stripes. Foliage is medium green and behaves well for me. After growing it for 4 years it only produced 1 sucker, so grooming has been little more than removing old leaves and spent flowers. It's a standard so may be too large if you only like minis or semi-minis. It also is in nearly constant bloom for me. It tends to be pricey, in the middle tier price-wise for chimeras, but this is due to the constant demand there is for this plant.
At the moment, my favorite is a new one I got at Lowes for $1. It is Optimara Ever Rejoice. It is one of the space violets. I like it because the leaves are in a good rosette and they are so unusual ... kind of wavy or crinkly. I like the look so much it doesn't matter if it blooms for me or not. I have Optimara Romance which is pink with varigated foliage. I like that one too.
L' Heure Bleu, a standard size Russian variety, is one of mine. Almost always in bloom under a 24" Walmart grow light. The flower is a ruffled lavendarish light blue depending on lighting.
Also Little Ottawa Girl, a semi miniature with bright pink semi double and double blooms. And I have recently discovered the delight of large flowering Kris. I'll post a picture of Kris in the gallery.
My favorites, based upon ease of growing, blooming, and beauty, follow ...
* L'heure Bleu (dark ruffled foliage, light lavendar-blue blooms)
* Private Dancer (nicely varieagated double dark blue-violet)
* Sansoucy Julie Marie (best white I've ever grown)
* Maggie Lee (beautiful bunches of white-edged pink flowers)
* Rebel's Night Breezes (constant white-edged dark violet-blue stars)
* Cranberry Crush (light maroon-edged pink blooms with nicely variegated foliage)
* King's Ransom (huge double stars of pale pink with white fantasy and edge)
* Easy Breezy Day (a new one, but very lovely light lavender-blue semi-double)
Easy Breezy Day
A couple mentioned above I already have, but most I don't. It's always fun looking up new ones that I'm unfamiliar with and adding them to my collection. Thanx for your favorites lists - keep them coming!
Are there any colors or sizes or types that you like or dislike? Sometimes I'm fondest of the one blooming nicely at the moment :)
Yesterday I was happy with my pink ones but Dominique and Candy Fountain probably aren't for everyone.
There are many nice blues, but Maverick's Faded Jeans is a good one (disbudded right now so it can grow).
If you don't have Optimara Tennessee, that seems to be a nice one in blue/white. I just got it recently at Lowe's so it's a good time to get it (convention in Nashville next month). It doesn't choke its center, which Chico and Texas do, although they are very nice ones too.
I may go down on record as the only person who threw out King's Ransom. It looked a lot like some other ones as far the color went. You may want to ignore me based on that.
Its difficult to list just one as a few of mine vie for the top spot. The class act of my collection is Ode to Beauty introduced in 1992 and usually on the best varieties list of the AVSA every year. The blossoms are lovely; it grows easily and always looks like its ready to go to a show.
I've also become very fond of Wild Irish Rose for its stunning variegated leaves and its ever blooming habit. The flowers may not be to everyone's liking, but I think they are fetching!
I like Grandifolia 299. It looks like a head of lettuce. It was blooming and the small, almost pewter blue flowers are charming.
It seems a bit trickier to grow the species. I received this one last month as a gift and I am still fiddling with it. It seems to need less light than the hybrids.
My favourites count optimara little Hopi II and little inca. (Ok I am a sucker for the entire 'little' series...) also, I have a sport of little arapahoe (?) which turned out quite nice.
The most vigorous bloomer and grower I have right now is a sport of optimara Yellowstone (it is purple and I am sure it has it's own optimara name but I can't remember it just now).
Firebird. It was the first violet I fell in love with and it is still my favorite. I am never without it.
Firebird I or Firebird II?
a few personal favorites
Fredette's Risen Star
Ness's Crinkle Blue
Nortex's Snowkist Haven is a very nice sparkling white
Snuggles Little Dreamer
Firebird is a very distinctive one - that and Seafoam. A shame they've never replicated them. I'm sure it's been tried.
This post was edited by quimoi on Wed, Apr 30, 14 at 11:10
Decisions - decisions!! The more I hear of your favorites, them more I want all of them!!
When I started growing, there was only one' Firebird' although I have seen it called strain II.
I also have 'Seafoam'. Now, if I could only get 'Garnet Elf', I will have completed the set!
I saw garnet elf for sale somewhere recently.... Trying to remember where... It is not on the bloomlovers website...
This post was edited by froeschli on Thu, May 1, 14 at 7:56
Thanks! These lists have been helpful as I don't have most of them! Two large light pink double stars are easy to grow, with showy blooms, are Southern Delight and Tenderness. The first is a hybrid of Lyndon Lyon. Large double light pink stars with rosy center and white edge, dark green leaves. The other is a Russian,very large light pink, medium green leaves. I got both from Lyndon Lyon. They make nice gift plants, too. Joanne
This post was edited by fortyseven on Thu, May 1, 14 at 22:13
If you remember where you saw 'Garnet Elf', let me know!
Right now, "Pixie Blue".
I love this thread--several of my favorites are already listed here. Current favorites are:
Ode to Beauty
Sky and Snow
And Private Dancer, starting to show off:
Oh, and I guess you asked why they're favorites too. :) My favorites tend to be the plants that bloom heavily and often, without a lot of effort to make that happen. I don't disbud, but I still want a nice full head of blooms. I also like big showy blooms, but only if they don't flop over. And, I'm a sucker for nice variegation.
I am starting to think it was at one on the sales tables at the avsc show. If so, I could really kick myself, because a set of leaves would only have been $1!!! If I remember right, I picked it up, thought it was a neat name, but the leaf was quite big and I was looking for (variegated) minis/semis... Gah. If I ever manage go back to the av society, I bet one of them donated that leaf...
Thanks, KC Girl, for the photos and lists, and thanks everyone for the lists.
Linda, Maybe if you wrote to Bloomlover's, she might help. Also, Donna Brining of Fancy Bloomers in New Jersey might be willing to track it down Just a suggestion ... maybe you already tried that.
This post was edited by fortyseven on Sat, May 3, 14 at 17:09
Thanks for the suggestions. I think I'll send out a few e-mails tomorrow. ;)
Was the avsc show Toronto based? I'm thinking I could contact the president of the Toronto club...
It was hosted by the Toronto African violet society, but the lakeshore African violet society had a table there too - and since apparently lots of people belong to both clubs, I don't know whose table I was shopping at....
Now I am hoping that I actually saw it there and not just a very similar name...
I've sent a couple of e-mails out and, so far, I'm having no luck.
Mardi Gras, a pretty chimera, also Gaudy Lady, she was a pain at first, but has grown into a lovely plant. I love Rob's Argyle Socks, a simi mini with beautiful foliage and a fast grower.
This has been great seeing all the different favorites! I've been able to add a few new ones to my wish list, which makes me happy - but I'm not sure about my husband since I'm already heading toward needing another set of shelves for all of them.
Keep them coming!
They might be away at Conventions, and behind in their emails.
This post was edited by fortyseven on Thu, May 8, 14 at 16:52