African Violets in Columbus

by | May 6, 2015 | 1 comment

franklin park conservatory 015

Columbus African Violet Society

Last week, I attended the Columbus African Violet Society Show and Sale at the Franklin Park Conservatory. I thought I would show you some pictures of the beautiful plants that were displayed in the show.

I always leave these African violet shows feeling like an incompetent violet grower. But, it also makes me want to do better.  Mine look nice, but never this amazing.

When you go to an African violet show and sale you won’t only see African violets. There are judged categories for all kinds of gesneriads, or African violet cousins. There are Streptocarpus like the ones above and Primulina like the ones below. Then you can go to the sale room and hopefully buy the plants you can’t live without that you saw in the show. I really wanted to buy the African violet ‘My Sensation’, but there wasn’t one left for sale. The Primulina below was available, though and is now in my plant room, of course, in a much smaller size.

Primulinas were previously called Chiritas, but were recently renamed. They like to be evenly moist, but have quite succulent leaves so can go longer between watering. What I love is the variegation on some of the leaves. They do flower, but who would need flowers with foliage like the plant below? The Primulina linearifolia is often used as a bonsai as it has a very large swollen trunk, or caudex.

Primulina dryas ‘Hisako’

Primulina linearifolia

Primulina linearifolia

There are also categories for dish gardens and terrariums. Here the imagination takes over. I love all the fairy garden elements added.

This flowering  Kohleria caught my eye immediately. It is so gorgeous. And check out the side shot of the flower and the hairs on the flower. Kohlerias have scaly rhizomes under the soil. They may go into dormancy after flowering at which time the rhizomes can be unearthed and split. These plants are very easy to grow and the flowers are usually speckled, sometimes in more than one color.

If you ever have a chance to go to a plant society’s show, take advantage of the opportunity. You will see the unusual and rare plants that the society’s members collect and coddle. You might find a new plant group that you never knew about and may want to grow. I love houseplants

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1 Comment

  1. Julia Hofley

    Wow Lisa! What a show! Those Primulinas are both gorgeous. I love growing this plant. It’s amazingly easy and when they bloom, it surprises me, cause I just love the foliage alone. Added value all the way. I haven’t seen the linearifolia before… Must find!


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