Plants and gardens have trends and fads just like everything else, and just like with clothes, some plants are cool and trendy for a while, then fade into being tired and old-fashioned, before being rediscovered by a new generation that makes them cool and trendy again. African violets are, at the moment, in the tired and old-fashioned part of that cycle, but I think they’re about to make a comeback in a big way.
If the only African violet you know is the one your grandma had on her windowsill, it might be time to take another look at these classic house plants. They have a lot to offer, being nearly the only house plant that will bloom all the time on a windowsill, and while the rest of the world has been forgetting about African violets, the people who love them have been busy collecting and breeding ever newer, more exciting, and prettier forms.
So today, we’ve got some pictures of the new face of African violets, by way of Ken Muzalewski. Though his company, Hunter’s Hybrids, he creates, collects, and sells some of the coolest, most cutting-edge violets available. Give them a look—it may be time to get a pot for your windowsill.
African violets aren’t just about flowers. This is ‘Cajun’s Lil Joy’, which is just starting to come into bloom. But who needs flowers when the leaves are this cool! This is one of Ken’s seedlings from his breeding program. No name yet, but look at all those flowers!‘Hunter’s Whitetail Fawn’ is a miniature African violet. Perfect for the smallest of windowsills, or for anyone who loves cute little things. ‘Mac’s Misty Meadow’ has abundant, clear white flowers. If other African violets are too frilly for you, this is a simple, elegant one.The flower pattern on ‘Moonsong’s Lady Fair’, with white petals showing a colored mark on the ends of the petals, is called a thumbprint. As if that weren’t enough, it also has variegated leaves!
Have a garden you’d like to share?
Have photos to share? We’d love to see your garden, a particular collection of plants you love, or a wonderful garden you had the chance to visit!
To submit, send 5-10 photos to GPOD@finegardening.com along with some information about the plants in the pictures and where you took the photos. We’d love to hear where you are located, how long you’ve been gardening, successes you are proud of, failures you learned from, hopes for the future, favorite plants, or funny stories from your garden.
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