How to grow and care for a begonia 2022

How to grow and care for a begonia 2022

Begonia is one of the plants that come from tropical climates and, therefore, requires special care to grow indoors. Previously we talked about how to grow and care for a chrysanthemum; now, we will teach you the tricks for begonias. 

If you have just Been given a begonia and you still don’t know what care it needs, don’t worry; we will give you all the guidelines so you can learn how to care for a begonia.

Begonia species

To care for a begonia, you must know what species it belongs to. Although, as we have said before, basically all begonias should follow similar care, you may have to care for a species of begonia that requires additional attention. We can divide begonias into four different families: 

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  • The rhizomatous, which has a stem that acts as a reserve organ.
  • The fibrous ones are characterized by having a smaller size than most begonia species.
  • The Semper Florens always have flowers and have the peculiarity that they support direct sun very well.
  • The tuberous, which have a thickened underground stem, where the nutrients that the plant needs accumulate, also have large flowers and are probably the most notable species.

Generic tips for caring for a begonia

  • Avoid low temperatures: in general, begonias prefer shade. However, they need heat. They do not support the cold well and much less frost; specifically, they need temperatures above 15ºC and below 22ºC.
  • Plant them in spring or summer: Begonias should be planted after the cold seasons have passed. They can be done alongside other plants as their roots don’t need much space.
  • Good drainage is essential: the soil needs to be well-drained to allow water to reach the begonia unimpeded.
  • The pH of the soil where you plant your begonias should be neutral or with little acidity.
  • Use fertilizers and read the manufacturer’s recommendations well.
  • If you have decided to leave your begonias inside your home, you should bear in mind that the begonia should place near the window or in one of them where the sun does not shine directly; it must also be a well-ventilated area. 

When to water a begonia

Begonias need to have a moist substrate but are never soggy. To know when it is necessary to add water, it is best to put a stick in the ground; if you take it out, it comes out clean; your begonia needs water.

An effective and cheap method to achieve the optimum degree of humidity that the plant needs is to place a plate underneath with water and pebbles; you do not have to put a lot of water; a little is enough.

Another method is to have a container of water near the plant. The water evaporates little by little, and the plant itself is already in charge of absorbing that moisture. Finally, as a recommendation, you should vaporize the leaves with water using a spray, but only the leaves, because if you do it on the flowers, these are very susceptible to fungus. 

When begonias bloom

Most varieties of begonia flower most of the year as long as we take special care in the humidity level and use the appropriate substrate. The Emperor begonia is one of the most common, especially for outdoors. Therefore, its growth and flowering indoors do not always work. If you live in a not very cold climate, it is ideal for putting them on the terrace, since this way you can ensure that they have flowers all year round. 

Why doesn’t my begonia have flowers?

  • You have bought an outdoor begonia, and you have it indoors. Perhaps it is very beautiful, but it does not have the conditions it needs from the outside. Humidity, ventilation, etc. 
  • They have too much heat inside. It usually happens in winter since we have the heat on and there is not enough humidity for the begonia.
  • We have watered it too much, and the roots are very wet. In this way, you are more focused on survival than on flowering. 
  • We are not adding compost to it. Plants are living beings that need vitamins, especially in spring and summer when they are most active. 

Pruning begonias

We already gave you the tips for pruning rose bushes, now we will tell you what you have to do with begonias:

  • Generally, begonias are not pruned; you have to remove the dry leaves and flowers since this can become a vehicle for parasitic diseases.
  • It is important that the utensils we use to cut them are clean and disinfected to avoid infecting the tissues. 
  • Bonus tip: if you’re at home pruning plants, don’t go from one plant to another without cleaning the tool. Having a lighter nearby is enough, but better if you can pass it a little water first. In this way, we avoid contagion of possible diseases (sometimes we do not even know they are) among the plants.
How to grow and care for a begonia 2022

Begonia leaf problems

Sometimes, we may observe a brownish tone of the leaves; this usually happens when we expose the plant to the sun directly; if the leaves were also wet while the begonia plant was in the sun, the process is accelerated.

In these cases, it is best to cut the affected leaves, place the plant in a suitable place, and let it recover.

There is another common cause in the leaves of begonias when they are not cared for correctly, and it is that sometimes you can see how the leaves do not have a fallen leaf appearance without firmness. In these cases, the reason is usually related to excess water or even heat. Check that you have not left your begonia near any heat source and move it if so. If the condition of the leaves is caused by excess moisture, do not water the plant until the substrate dries and let the plant recover for a few days.

There are about 1500 species of Begonias, and it belongs to the Begoniaceae family. It is one of the most popular plants both indoors and outdoors because its care is very simple and flowered all year round. And we love that! There are three types within the 1500 species: rhizomatous, fibrous, and tuberous

If we want it indoors, we must ensure which of these three families it belongs to. Rhizomatous and fibrous begonias are suitable for growing indoors. However, tuberoses are more difficult to keep at home; it would be necessary to have a greenhouse since 

They require a high degree of humidity and light.

If we have it indoors, it needs indirect light. However, it is better to have it in a shady area if it is outdoors.

Begonias are subdivided into three large categories according to the type of root:

  • Begonias with rhizomatous roots: they are evergreen plants, and their peculiarity is the presence of a rhizome at the root site or, in other words, an underground perennial stem that functions as a reserve or storage organ for nutrients. The leaves are unstably coloured. The stems are creeping, and the flowers are showy;
  • Begonias with tuberous root: these are plants characterized by having the root formed by a large blackish tuber. Generally, they are annual plants, there are also perennials, and they produce very large single or double and highly coloured flowers;
  • Begonias with a fasciculate root: they are evergreen plants, and their peculiarity is the fasciculate roots (that is, the secondary roots grow as much as the main root). Some begonias of this type are shrubby, others have a creeping bearing, but all produce panicle flowers.

How to care for a Begonia?

Most species of begonia come from tropical or subtropical climates. I always say this because it conditions the time that we have to have in our house so that it survives and is always (or almost always) in bloom.

On a practical level, this means that these plants need quality or mild temperatures to live between 18 and 22 degrees is ideal, but they can also live at somewhat warmer temperatures.

The ideal environment for a begonia to grow is warm and humid. We must have it in an area of ​​the house that receives indirect sun most of the day. 

Begonias are not able to withstand very cold temperatures. If you live in a cold area, you will have to create suitable conditions or die. Keep this in mind if you will have it on a terrace or gallery. When winter comes, you better bring it home. Nor does he like drafts.

Begonias with dark leaves do not need as much light as green ones. So if you want to have one, but you are not sure that the location you want to put it in has enough light, opt for one with brown leaves, for example.

When do I have to water a begonia?

The begonias need to have the substrate always humid, not flooded. The best way to know if you need watering is to touch the substrate. If it’s dry, it needs water. Better to always have the substrate moist than not flooded. Also, from time to time, vaporize its leaves with a spray. But only the leaves vaporize the flowers because they are very susceptible to fungus.

Remember that you will have to water them at least a couple of times a week in summer. In winter, possibly one day a week will be enough.

 When we have them indoors, it is normal to have a plate under the pot. Begonia does not like to have wet roots. So half an hour or at most an hour after watering it, remove the excess water in the dish.

In addition, during spring and summer, add specific liquid fertilizer for flowers in the irrigation water once a week. With this, we are going to ensure maximum flowering. In winter, doing it every three weeks will be enough.

How to get a good degree of humidity in the plants?

A cheap and effective method of achieving this degree of humidity is to put a plate underneath with water and pebbles; it does not take a large quantity; the typical plates used with plants with a little water and pebbles will maintain the degree of humidity.

How to grow and care for a begonia 2022
How to grow and care for a begonia 2022

The second option is to have a small water container near the pot. The guy will evaporate little by little, and the plant will take advantage of these small levels of humidity.

We have also discussed humidifiers on other occasions. If you have several plants that need a high degree of humidity, put them together and buy a room vaporizer. The good news is that not only will plants take advantage of that level of humidity, but it is also really good for people, especially for those who live in dry climates.

When does begonia bloom?

As I have already mentioned, there are more than 1500 different species, but not all are always in flower. Many of them flower for a good part of the year as long as we take special care with the humidity level and use the appropriate substrate.

Begonia semperflorens, also known as sugar flowers or dragon wings, are most common, especially for outdoor use. Be careful with this because its continuous growth and flowering indoors will not always work.

However, if you live in a not very cold climate, they are perfect to have them on terraces. It is characterized by having a fleshy oval or rounded leaves and small flowers present all year round in pink, red or white.

What begonia does not bloom?

As I have already mentioned, all begonias have a flower. The Begonia Rex is indeed better known for its striking leaves than for the flower since it blooms only once a year; some may never flower at all. Its flower is not especially showy compared to the leaves.

Begonia rex is easy as a houseplant, as it doesn’t need too much light and grows very fast.

Why is my begonia not blooming?

First, you have to evaluate several things:

  • If you have bought an outdoor begonia and you have it indoors. It may be alive and very green, but you can’t make it bloom because it doesn’t have the conduits it needs outdoors.
  • Because it is hot inside the house, this happens a lot in winter, when we have strong heating and no humidity.
  • Because we have watered them too much and the roots are very wet. In this way, the plant is more focused on survival than flowering.
  • We are not adding liquid manure. Never forget that plants are living things and that they need vitamins. Much more during spring and summer than in the cold months.

When to prune a begonia?

Begonia is generally not pruned. Only the leaves at the base are cut and gradually dried to prevent them from becoming a vehicle for parasitic diseases.

The utensil that we cut is very important; it must always be clean and disinfected (preferably by flame) to avoid infecting the tissues.

Do begonias like sun or shade?

Most begonias grow best in part shade (4 to 6 hours of direct morning sun a day), or filtered sun (as through trees). Most will tolerate full shade (no direct or filtered sun), but won’t be as dense and usually have fewer flowers. A few grow in full sun. They prefer moist, but not soggy, soils.

Do begonias come back every year?

There are no perennial begonias. There are forms that make great houseplants and will grow year-round indoors, but outdoors the plants are all unable to tolerate frost.

How long do begonias live for?

2 to 3 yearsAs the water evaporates, it will create a zone of humidity around your plant. No begonia has a long life span. Most only live for 2 to 3 years, even with good care. Cane begonias such as angel wings go dormant if the temperature gets too cool.

Are begonias good indoor plants?

Generally, fibrous and rhizomatous begonias make excellent houseplants while tuberous begonias can be grown as houseplants but have a harder time surviving due to the need for higher humidity and light than the other two kinds. … Begonias grown indoors are especially susceptible to root rot and overwatering.

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