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Browallia speciosa - Bush violet

Good for: Plant several Browallias together for a good display, and keep trimmed.

The Plant: A small, straggly plant, producing a mass of purple or white violet-like flowers from spring to late autumn.

Its needs:  Bush violets appreciate strong light, including morning sun. Well-draining potting mix, and high humidity.


Regular watering of Browallias is essential, and a weekly feed to promote flowering, and maintain a long flowering season. Browallia dislikes cold. The plant is prone to become straggly, and should be trimmed back, and dead/weak stems removed. In late autumn flowering ceases, and the plant dies back.

 It is better to collect the seed and sow in shallow trays for next year rather than trying to keep the plant over winter. It is also possible to take cuttings from the tips of new growth in autumn or spring. Watch out for Red spider mite.

Comprehensive Guide to Growing and Caring for Browallia Speciosa (Bush Violet)

Basic Information

Browallia Speciosa, commonly known as Bush Violet or Amethyst Flower, is a perennial plant native to South America. It's admired for its striking blue-violet flowers and lush green foliage, making it a popular choice for both indoor and outdoor gardening.

Optimal Planting Conditions


Bush Violet prefers rich, well-draining soil with a slightly acidic pH. A good potting mix would be one part loamy soil, one part peat moss, and one part perlite or coarse sand.


This plant thrives under bright, indirect sunlight. When grown indoors, place it near an east or west-facing window. Outdoors, it can tolerate partial shade to full sun.

Watering and Fertilizing Requirements

Water your Browallia Speciosa regularly, keeping the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Overwatering can lead to root rot. During the winter months, reduce watering slightly.

Fertilize your Bush Violet every two weeks during the growing season (spring and summer) with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer diluted to half strength. Cut back on fertilizing during the fall and winter.

Common Diseases and Pests

Like any plant, Browallia Speciosa can be susceptible to pests like spider mites, aphids, and whiteflies. Regular inspection of your plant can help catch an infestation early. If found, you can remove pests using insecticidal soap or neem oil spray.

Root rot can also be a concern if the plant is overwatered. Ensure your plant has well-draining soil and avoid letting it sit in water.

Comprehensive Guide to Diseases and Pests Affecting Browallia Speciosa (Bush Violet)

  1. 1. Aphids

    Description: Aphids are small, soft-bodied insects that suck sap from plants, reducing their vigor. They come in various colors including green, black, brown, or white.

    Symptoms: Yellowing leaves, stunted growth, and a sticky substance known as honeydew which can lead to sooty mold.

    Prevention & Treatment: Regular inspection of your plant can help catch an infestation early. If found, you can remove aphids by blasting the plant with water or using insecticidal soap or neem oil spray.

  2. 2. Spider Mites

    Description: Spider mites are tiny, spider-like pests that feed on plant sap. They're often found underneath leaves and can be hard to spot without a magnifying glass.

    Symptoms: Yellow or brown spots on leaves, webbing on the plant, and overall weakness.

    Prevention & Treatment: Increase humidity around your plant as spider mites prefer dry conditions. For treatment, rinse the plant thoroughly to knock off the mites, or use an insecticidal soap or miticide.

  3. 3. Whiteflies

    Description: Whiteflies are tiny, white-winged insects that suck sap from plants.

    Symptoms: Yellowing leaves, reduced vigor, and honeydew production leading to sooty mold.

    Prevention & Treatment: Introduce natural predators like ladybugs into your garden. Sticky traps can also help control whitefly populations. In severe cases, use insecticidal soap or a systemic insecticide.

  4. 4. Root Rot

    Description: This is a fungal disease that often results from overwatering or poor drainage.

    Symptoms: Wilted leaves, brown or black roots, and stunted growth.

    Prevention & Treatment: Ensure your plant has well-draining soil and avoid overwatering. Improve air circulation around the plant. Fungicides can help treat root rot, but severely affected plants may need to be discarded to prevent spread.

  5. 5. Powdery Mildew

    Description: This is a fungal disease that appears as a white powdery substance on the surface of leaves.

    Symptoms: White spots on leaves that expand into a powdery coating, distorted leaves, and reduced vigor.

    Prevention & Treatment: Avoid overhead watering and ensure good air circulation. Fungicides or homemade solutions like a mixture of water, baking soda, and dish soap can be used to treat powdery mildew.

Remember, prevention is always better than cure when it comes to plant diseases and pests. Regular inspection, proper watering, good air circulation, and cleanliness can go a long way in keeping your Browallia Speciosa healthy.

Decorating with Browallia Speciosa

Bush Violet's vibrant blooms and lush foliage make it a great choice for adding a pop of color to your home or garden. Here are some creative ways to decorate with this plant:

Indoor Hanging Baskets: With its cascading growth habit, Browallia Speciosa looks stunning in hanging baskets. Hang them near windows where they can get plenty of light.

Container Gardening: Plant Bush Violet in a container with other shade-loving plants for a beautiful mixed arrangement.

Garden Borders: Use Browallia Speciosa as a border plant in your garden. Its bright flowers will add a lovely splash of color.

Floral Arrangements: The long-lasting, vivid flowers of Browallia Speciosa make it a great choice for fresh floral arrangements. Pair it with other bold-colored flowers for a striking bouquet.

With the right care and attention, Browallia Speciosa can be a delightful addition to your plant collection. Enjoy its beautiful blooms and lush foliage all year round!

Comprehensive Guide to Growing Browallia Speciosa (Bush Violet) from Seed

Sowing the Seed

Best Time to Sow The best time to sow Browallia Speciosa seeds is in early spring. The plant is an annual, which means it completes its life cycle in one growing season, so you'll want to give it as much time as possible to grow and bloom.

Soil Type and Nutrients Browallia Speciosa prefers rich, well-draining soil with a slightly acidic pH (between 6.0 and 7.0). A good starting mix would be one part loamy soil, one part peat moss, and one part perlite or coarse sand. This plant doesn't require heavy feeding, but you can add some slow-release fertilizer to the soil before planting for a nutrient boost.

Germination and Growth

Temperature and Lighting Requirements Browallia Speciosa seeds need a temperature of around 70-75°F (21-24°C) to germinate. Place the seed tray in a warm location and cover it lightly to maintain humidity. Seeds should sprout in about two weeks.

Once sprouted, Browallia Speciosa seedlings prefer cooler temperatures around 60-65°F (15-18°C). They also require plenty of light, so place them in a sunny window or under grow lights.

Special Care Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Overwatering can lead to damping off, a fungal disease that can kill seedlings. Also, ensure good air circulation to prevent fungal diseases.

Transplant the seedlings into individual pots once they have developed their second set of true leaves. Handle them carefully by their leaves rather than their delicate stems.

Harvesting Seeds and Cuttings

When and How to Harvest You can collect seeds from Browallia Speciosa at the end of the growing season when the flowers have faded and seed pods have formed. Allow the pods to dry on the plant, then collect them and let them dry indoors for a few days before opening them to retrieve the seeds.

Cuttings can be taken in late summer. Choose healthy, non-flowering shoots and cut them just below a leaf node. Remove the lower leaves and insert the cutting into a pot of moist, well-draining soil mix. Cover the pot with a plastic bag to maintain humidity and place it in a bright location out of direct sunlight. The cuttings should root in about four to six weeks.

With careful attention to temperature, lighting, and moisture, you can successfully grow Browallia Speciosa from seed and enjoy its vibrant blooms all summer long!


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