Common African Violet Problems

Crown Rot
This is a fungus disease that is usually caused by watering too much, having poor drainage, or planting too deeply. Younger leaves will appear stunted, black, and will eventually die, whereas the older leaves will droop. There is no treatment for already affected plants, so you should do your best to prevent it from occurring. To prevent, check repeatedly for accurate drainage and be sure to only water your plant when the surface of the soil is dry.

Botrytis Blight
This is a fungus characterized by water-soaking lesions on the underside of the leaves. The stems, leaves, and flowers will turn dark and will appear to have a fuzzy coating. Remove affected plant parts right away. Prevent it from happening again by keeping the leaves dry while watering and by lowering humidity and improving air circulation.

Powdery Mildew
This is a fungus characterized by a white powdery substance growing on the surface of the leaf. The best way to treat, is to remove all of the affected leaves and to treat the remaining leaves with a fungicide spray.

Ring Spot
This is a physical problem that is often caused by allowing water to get onto the surface of the leaves in direct sunlight, or by watering with water that is too cold. The best way to keep this from happening is to use only room temperature water, and to be sure to apply it only to the soil.

Cyclamen Mites
These are extremely small pests indicated by the stunting or curling of flower buds and/or leaves in the center of the plant. Flower buds may fail to open. The best treatment is to just discard the infested plants and to sterilize the containers they were in prior to reusing. If the plant is valuable, they may be treated with a miticide, but it doesn’t always solve the issue. 

These are small, soft-bodied insects that usually appear in large masses. You know there is an infestation when there is a sticky substance (honeydew) found on the leaves, under the actual insects, or on the surfaces of the plant. The only treatment is to spray with insect sprays labeled for indoor plant use, and that won’t damage the African violet any further. 

These are tiny insects that feed on pollen and plant tissue. Often, the pollen will be noticed on the leaves and around the flowers. The flowers may become deformed or brown at the tip. The best treatment is to remove and discard all of the flowers and flower buds. Spray with an insect spray labeled for indoor plant use, and that won’t damage the African violet any further.