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Pot Size - Too Large


When African Violets are planted in a pot size that is too large, they will expend the greatest part of their energy trying to fill the pot with roots, rather than growing leaves or flowers. By itself, this condition is not necessarily cause for concern, as long as you are satisfied with diminished foliage growth and few flowers. However, if your African Violet shows signs that its pot size is too large, the chance of more serious problems is greatly increased. When the root system does not fill the pot, your African Violet cannot absorb all the water that it gets, leaving excess moisture that may attract potentially fatal pathogens such as Root Rot or Crown Rot. (Also see Water - Too Much.)

Distinguishing Symptoms

If your African Violet has this symptom, its pot size is too large.

Also see:

Pot - Inadequate Drainage
Potting Soil - Too Heavy
Water - Too Much

Other Symptoms


Repot in the next pot size down. In general, pot sizes for African Violets come in 1-inch increments. Therefore, if your African Violet is over-potted in a 5-inch pot, repot in a 4-inch pot.

Be sure to use what is called an Azalea pot. These pots are more shallow than standard pots. Their height is three-quarters the size of their diameter at the top of the pot.

Before repotting, remember to disinfect the pot with a 10 percent bleach solution, i.e., 1 part bleach to 9 parts water.

For more information on repotting, see "Caring for African Violets."


When repotting, always use the next pot size up. In general, pot sizes for African Violets are available in 1-inch increments. Therefore, if your African Violet is currently planted in a 4-inch pot (the diameter measured at the top), then you should move to a 5-inch pot. Keep in mind that African Violets prefer shallow pots. Commercial African Violet growers use an Azalea pot. This pot has an ideal height-to-diameter ratio, where the height is three-fourths the size of the diameter, i.e., if the diameter equals 4 inches, the height equals 3 inches.

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