will cold kill my AVs?

violetta1976(8 Portland OR)November 29, 2007

It's so cold here - INSIDE my house - that I'm actually worried about my AVs. I don't want to leave the heat on while I'm at work all day... and I don't really need it while I'm sleeping (underneath about 12 blankets, of course)... but should I be worried about my AVs?

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African Violets can withstand temperatures in the 60s but if it gets down into the 50s you're sure to have trouble. If you are growing them with natural light from your windows, keep in mind that the temperature close to windows can be much colder than it is further out into the room. One problem you could run into is powdery mildew. The only time I ever had it was when I had some plants in my windows and the winter nights were very cold. It's kind of like having pets like a dog or cat. If they are in your home when you're gone or sleeping, their needs must be taken into consideration.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 1:32PM
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irina_co(z5 CO)

Violetta -

if your place is less than 65F - you will see some deterioration on your plants - they will start gettinng crunchy, hugging the pot - trying to keep themselves warm. Keep them on a dry side - water them just barely - otherwise you will loose them to root rot.

My dear friend was always complaining that she cannot grow violets and she loves them so much - so I set her with a small shelving unit with lights, bunch of Dandy pots, fertilizer - and 30 blooming named violets as a birthday gift. So everything was doing great until the winter came. At that time - she decided that she really needed to save money - so she kept her place at 48F while she was out - and saved I think $10 a month on her electric bill - she lived in the apartment - so the space was not that big. Guess what - in a month they all were dead - rotted away. You know - I am still pissed at her. I confiscated the shelving unit back and told her too stick to artificial flowers.

So that's the sad story.


PS - so - to keep your plants alive - you really need some dedicated space for them - where you can keep them warm. If you do not want to keep your whole place warm - may be you can fix them with shoplights and keep them in a bathroom - than the lights will keep them warmer in a small space. I keep mine in a basement in a small room with registers open and the door almost closed - just a crack to keep the air moving - and it is the warmest place in a house.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 1:36PM
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violetta1976(8 Portland OR)

Oh goodness, I doubt it's 65 in my place. I ordered a temp/humidity thermometer with my most recent order for more Oyama pots. Hopefully it will show up soon so I will know for sure.

Part of the problem is the open floor plan. There isn't really any dedicated space where I can keep them.

The cats are fine... and all the adult plants are doing great... but I have a feeling that the leaves that have been rooting since mid-September are going to die just as they're about to grow babies unless I do something.

Should I keep the leaves dryer than I have been recently? Might that help? I wouldn't mind waiting longer to have babies one bit, I just don't want the leaves to die.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2007 at 7:22PM
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irina_co(z5 CO)


you do not want to go much lower than 65. You know - they are from Africa...

Yes - for the leaves - do not let them dry totally - but do not them stay too wet too.

Keep warm!


    Bookmark   November 30, 2007 at 6:17PM
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violetta1976(8 Portland OR)

Aye, Cap'n, will do. Thanks!

    Bookmark   December 1, 2007 at 4:13AM
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