Best Water for African Violets: Types, Benefits, and Usage

The best water for African Violets refers to water that has the right composition of minerals and pH balance, ensuring optimal plant health and growth. Water with low levels of impurities, such as contaminants or harmful chemicals, helps these delicate plants thrive.

best water for african violets

Since African Violets are sensitive to water quality, it is essential to maintain the ideal range of water parameters. This enhances their growth, color, and overall vitality. Choosing the best water for African Violets is the cornerstone of proper care and maintaining a flourishing plant.

What are the Ideal Quality Parameters of Water for African Violets?

The ideal quality parameters of water for African Violets cover several aspects, ensuring the best conditions for the plants to thrive. These parameters include:

  • pH level: African Violets prefer slightly acidic water with a pH level between 6.0 and 6.5.
  • Soluble Salts: The water should have low levels of soluble salts to avoid root damage and leaf burn; a level below 50 ppm (parts per million) is preferred.
  • Hardness: Soft to slightly hard water is suitable for African Violets, with a hardness range of 50 to 150 ppm.
  • Chlorine and Chloramine: Using water with low levels of chlorine and chloramine is crucial, as these chemicals can damage the plant’s roots and foliage.
  • Water temperature: Room temperature water between 65°F and 75°F (18°C to 24°C) is ideal for African Violets.

By maintaining these water quality parameters, you can create the optimal environment for your African Violets, ensuring proper growth, beautiful blooms, and a healthy root system. It is important to regularly test your water quality and adjust it as needed to give your plants the best chance at success.

What Water Types Can You Use for African Violets?

There are several water types that you can use for African Violets, each with its benefits and drawbacks. It’s important to choose the best type suitable for your plants and local circumstances.

  • Rainwater: Rainwater is an excellent option for African Violets as it is naturally soft and free of chemicals; however, it must be collected and stored properly to ensure its quality.
  • Distilled Water: Distilled water, which has had all its impurities removed through the distillation process, is ideal for African Violets due to its purity and absence of minerals.
  • Reverse Osmosis Water: Reverse osmosis water is another high-quality water source, as it has been stripped of most contaminants, leaving a clean and balanced solution for African Violets’ needs.
  • Filtered Water: Filtered water can be suitable for African Violets if it has been processed through a quality water filtration system, reducing its impurities and ensuring an ideal pH balance.
  • Soft Tap Water: Soft tap water with low mineral content can be used for African Violets. Make sure the tap water’s quality parameters fall within the ideal range, and let it sit for 24 hours to allow chlorine to dissipate before using it.
  • Bottled Spring Water: Bottled spring water can be a convenient option for African Violets; however, it’s essential to check the water quality parameters on the label to ensure it meets the plant’s requirements.
  • Dechlorinated Tap Water: Dechlorinated tap water is ordinary tap water treated to remove chlorine or chloramine, making it safer for sensitive plants like African Violets. Using a dechlorination agent or optimal sitting time will give you water suitable for your plants.

Now let’s see in detail, what are the characteristics and benefits of using the different types of water for your African violets.


Rainwater is a natural and environmentally friendly option for watering African Violets. It is usually soft, free of chemicals, and has the right mineral composition, making it an ideal choice for these delicate plants. To collect rainwater, use a clean and covered rain barrel or container, ensuring that it’s well-positioned to catch runoff from roofs or gutters. It’s essential to keep the container sealed to prevent debris, insects, or algae growth from contaminating the water.

Before using rainwater on your African Violets, be sure to strain it through a fine mesh or filter to remove any sediment or unwanted particles. Keep in mind that if you live in an area with significant air pollution, it’s crucial to monitor the quality of the collected rainwater, as contaminants can accumulate during periods of heavy rain.

While rainwater is an excellent option, it’s vital to ensure that it doesn’t become too acidic due to pollutants in the atmosphere. Testing the water’s pH level is essential, and if needed, you can use buffering agents to adjust the pH level.

Additionally, you can store collected rainwater in a cool, dark place for future use, keeping it away from direct sunlight to inhibit algae growth. By regularly monitoring and maintaining the quality of the collected rainwater, you can provide your African Violets with high-quality water that will help them thrive and flourish.

Distilled Water

Distilled water is a highly purified form of water that has undergone a distillation process, meaning it has been boiled, and the steam collected and condensed back into liquid form. This process removes almost all impurities, minerals, and contaminants, making distilled water an excellent choice for African Violets.

The main advantage of using distilled water is its purity and consistent quality. As African Violets are sensitive to water quality, distilled water minimizes the risk of damage from impurities, such as heavy metals, and ensures the right pH balance for the plants. With no dissolved minerals, distilled water allows you to control the nutrient intake of your African Violets if you’re using a fertilizer or supplement.

However, distilled water has some drawbacks, such as its cost and availability compared to other water sources. The distillation process can be energy-intensive and time-consuming, so purchasing distilled water can be more expensive than using tap water or collecting rainwater. Additionally, distilling water at home requires specialized equipment and may not be practical for all gardeners.

Despite these challenges, using distilled water can be a straightforward and effective way to meet the water quality requirements of African Violets without the need for additional treatment or testing. Prioritizing the quality of water provided to your African Violets will contribute to their overall health, appearance, and longevity, supporting optimal flowering and growth.

Reverse Osmosis Water

Reverse osmosis (RO) water is created by a purification process that involves forcing water through a semipermeable membrane to remove impurities, unwanted minerals, and contaminants. The result is highly purified water suitable for sensitive plants like African Violets.

The benefit of using reverse osmosis water for African Violets is the significant reduction in impurities and optimal water quality. The RO process effectively removes harmful compounds such as heavy metals, dissolved salts, and chemicals, leaving clean water that meets the ideal parameters for African Violets, including pH balance and minimal mineral content. As a result, using RO water can promote a healthy root system and vibrant foliage for your plants.

Investing in reverse osmosis filtration systems can be costly upfront; however, with proper maintenance, they offer a long-term, reliable water source for African Violets. Having an RO system at home also provides a consistent supply of high-quality water, eliminating the need to purchase distilled or bottled water.

Despite its benefits, it’s important to note that using reverse osmosis water can strip essential minerals and nutrients from the water. To address this issue, you may need to supplement your plants’ nutrients with a well-balanced fertilizer specifically formulated for African Violets.

Filtered Water

Filtered water is an accessible and cost-effective option for African Violets when obtained through a reliable water filtration system. Many filtration systems can remove a substantial portion of impurities, chemicals, and unwanted minerals, resulting in water that’s suitable for sensitive plants.

Before using filtered water, it’s essential to ensure that your filtration system effectively reduces the levels of contaminants that could harm African Violets, such as heavy metals, chloramines, and dissolved salts. There are various filtration systems available, such as activated carbon filters, ceramic filters, and ion exchange resins, each with different capabilities. The right system will depend on what impurities are present in your tap water and what level of purification is required for your plants.

Filtered water offers several benefits for African Violets, such as minimizing the risk of root damage or leaf burn caused by high mineral content or chemical exposure. Additionally, filtering tap water can help balance the pH level, resulting in water that falls within the ideal range for African Violets.

Maintaining your filtration system is crucial, as filters need to be replaced regularly to continue working effectively. Failing to replace filters can lead to a reduction in water quality and may ultimately harm your African Violets due to the presence of impurities.

Soft Tap Water

Soft tap water, which contains low levels of minerals like calcium and magnesium, is an accessible and convenient option for African Violets if it meets the required quality parameters. To ensure that soft tap water is suitable for your plants, verify that the pH is within the ideal range of 6.0 to 6.5 and the hardness falls between 50 and 150 ppm.

When using soft tap water, it’s important to be mindful of chlorine and chloramine levels, as these chemicals can be harmful to African Violets. Allowing tap water to sit uncovered for 24 hours can help dissipate the chlorine; however, if chloramines are present, you’ll need a specialized filter or a dechlorinating agent to remove them.

If soft tap water in your area has high levels of dissolved salts, filtering the water may be necessary to protect your plants from potential harm. Investing in a suitable water filter or using an alternative water source can make a significant difference in your African Violets’ health and appearance.

Always monitor your soft tap water’s quality regularly and adjust its parameters as needed, either through pH adjustment or added supplements. Careful attention to the water quality can result in healthy African Violets with vibrant blooms and strong root systems.

Bottled Spring Water

Bottled spring water can be a viable option for African Violets, especially if you lack access to other high-quality water sources or prefer the convenience of using a ready-to-use water source. However, it is crucial to check the water quality parameters listed on the bottle’s label, such as the pH, hardness, and mineral content, to ensure they fall within the acceptable ranges for African Violets.

The primary advantage of using bottled spring water is its convenience and easy availability. Additionally, it can be a reliable option when traveling with your plants or if you’re unable to collect rainwater due to environmental or logistical reasons.

Nonetheless, there are some drawbacks to consider when using bottled spring water, such as its cost compared to tap or filtered water, and the environmental impact of plastic bottles. If you opt for bottled spring water, look for brands offering water in eco-friendly packaging or consider recycling the bottles to minimize your environmental footprint.

When using bottled spring water for African Violets, maintain a consistent watering schedule, and monitor your plants for any signs of stress or changes in growth patterns. Be prepared to make adjustments or switch to another water source if needed.

Dechlorinated Tap Water

Dechlorinated tap water refers to tap water that has been treated to remove chlorine or chloramine, making it a safer option for sensitive plants like African Violets. Both chlorine and chloramine are chemicals commonly used in water treatment facilities to disinfect tap water, but they can have negative effects on plant growth.

One simple method to dechlorinate tap water is by allowing it to sit uncovered for 24 hours before watering your African Violets. This allows the chlorine to dissipate naturally, leaving the water safer for your plants. However, this method does not remove chloramines, which are more stable than chlorine and do not evaporate as quickly.

To remove chloramines, you can use a specialized water filter designed to tackle this specific contaminant. Alternatively, you can add a dechlorination agent, available at garden centers or aquarium supply stores, to neutralize the chloramines effectively. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the appropriate usage and dosage of these agents.

It is still essential to monitor the pH, hardness, and dissolved salt levels in the dechlorinated tap water, as these factors can also affect your African Violets’ health. If needed, consider using a filter or other water treatment methods to adjust the water parameters within the ideal range for African Violets.

How to Water African Violets Using Different Water Types?

Regardless of the water type, the correct watering technique for African Violets is essential for maintaining their health and appearance.

Here are a few steps to ensure proper watering using different water types:

  1. Choose your water type: Select the best water type for your African Violets based on accessibility, convenience, cost, and plant requirements.
  2. Ensure water quality: Before watering, make sure that the water meets the ideal parameters for African Violets, such as pH, hardness, and dissolved salts. Adjust water parameters as needed.
  3. Water temperature: Always use water at room temperature (65°F to 75°F or 18°C to 24°C) to avoid shock or damage to your plants.
  4. Watering method: African Violets prefer bottom-watering or self-watering methods to prevent getting water on their leaves, which can cause spotting or rot. Fill a saucer or tray beneath the pot with water and allow the plant to absorb it through the drainage holes for about an hour. Remove any excess water to prevent root rot.
  5. Watering frequency: Water your African Violets when the top inch of the soil feels dry to the touch, typically every 5 to 7 days, depending on factors such as temperature and humidity.

By applying these watering practices, you can properly hydrate your African Violets using any of the discussed water types. Remember that each situation and plant is unique, so observing your plants for any signs of over or under-watering and adjusting your watering routine accordingly will result in healthy and vibrant African Violets.

What is the Best Water Type for African Violets?

The best water type for African Violets often depends on individual circumstances like local water sources, environmental factors, and personal preferences. However, there are certain water types that are generally more suitable for these sensitive plants due to their quality and mineral content:

  • Rainwater: Collected and stored correctly, rainwater is an excellent option as it’s naturally soft, free of chemicals, and has the right composition of minerals.
  • Distilled Water: Known for its high purity, distilled water is ideal due to the absence of impurities and minerals, which can harm African Violets.
  • Reverse Osmosis Water: Another purified water type, reverse osmosis water effectively removes most contaminants, providing a clean and balanced solution for African Violets.

Each water type has its advantages and disadvantages, so it is important to consider your own situation, accessibility to certain water types, and any additional costs (such as water filtration systems). Always ensure that the water type you choose meets the quality parameters like pH, hardness, and the absence of harmful chemicals for African Violets to thrive.

Ultimately, the best water type for your African Violets is the one that best fulfills your plants’ requirements while being convenient and manageable for you. Monitoring your African Violets’ health and making any necessary adjustments to your watering routine will ensure a successful and rewarding plant care experience.

What is the Best Water Temperature for African Violets?

The best water temperature for African Violets is room temperature, ranging from 65°F to 75°F (18°C to 24°C). Using water within this temperature range helps prevent shock or damage to the plants, as extreme temperature changes can negatively affect their roots and overall health.

Watering African Violets with cold water can cause the roots to constrict, impeding the water and nutrient uptake, which can lead to poor growth and stunted blooms. On the other hand, watering with hot water can damage root tissues, weaken leaf stems, and cause overall stress to the plant.

To ensure that the water you’re using is at the right temperature, follow these tips:

  • If using tap, filtered, or dechlorinated water, always let the water sit at room temperature for several hours, or overnight, to reach the ideal temperature for your African Violets.
  • For rainwater, make sure that your collection container or rain barrel is placed in a shaded area to avoid drastic temperature changes from direct sunlight.
  • If using distilled or reverse osmosis water stored in cool areas, allow the water to warm up to room temperature before using it on your plants.

By consistently providing African Violets with water at an appropriate temperature, you minimize the risk of damage and stress, promoting their overall health and bloom production. Always monitor and adjust your watering practices based on the specific needs of your African Violet plants and environmental factors to ensure a thriving and rewarding plant care experience.


In conclusion, carefully selecting the right water type and maintaining the ideal water parameters can significantly influence the health and growth of your African Violets. We hope you found this guide helpful! Please feel free to leave a comment with your insights or experiences.

African Violets   Updated: May 23, 2023
avatar Hi, I'm Amy, a devoted horticulturist and the creator of, where I use my expertise to help beginners foster their green thumbs. My blog is a vibrant community where I unravel the complexities of gardening and share my profound love for nature.
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