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There are a lot of decorative deciduous begonias, they differ not only in appearance, size, bush shape, leaf color, but also in the requirements for growing conditions. Some types of begonias are completely unpretentious, others are considered capricious. But if you want extraordinary beauty of the leaves, begonias need to be looked after.
All begonias grow well at moderate temperatures - in summer 20-26 ° C during the day, not lower than 15-16 ° C at night, they do not tolerate heat well, especially when the air is dry (dry days without precipitation). In winter, begonias do not need to arrange a special dormant period, they grow well in normal home conditions, but if you have dark windows and there is no way to supplement the illumination of plants, it is better to find a cooler place, where it is about 16-18 ° C, at least 15 ° C. Royal begonia hybrids are more thermophilic, they are comfortable in winter at temperatures not lower than 20 ° C.
Begonias are relatively shade-tolerant, not shade-loving at all, they feel good when the light is openwork, bright lace, through a slight shade in spring and summer. That is, protection from direct sunlight at noon (from 11 am to 4 pm from May to September). It is desirable that the lighting is uniform throughout the year. To do this, in the summer, begonias are somewhat moved away from the window (but the place should be very bright), and in winter they are moved as close as possible to the window. If you have long, cold winters (in central Russia), then you can put the pots for this period on sunny windows from about September to January, the direct sun will not harm.
This begonia has very long petioles - a clear sign of a lack of light. Leaves droop from the hot dry air.
Reddening of leaves in begonias can be caused by too bright lighting or a lack of nutrients.
Large-leaved begonias grow quickly and quickly deplete the soil, manifests itself with pallor and yellowing.
In spring and summer, begonias are watered abundantly, but do not fill - begonias do not like stagnant water, as well as drying out of an earthen coma. In winter, watering is moderate, on cloudy, gloomy days, when there is very little light, watering is stopped altogether. Begonias are watered very carefully so that the stream of water does not fall on the leaves, otherwise brown spots remain on them. The water should be soft, settled. Between October and March, begonias are watered more moderately. From March to October, fertilizing is carried out once a week, using liquid complex fertilizers for decorative leafy plants.
Begonias require high humidity. But bush begonias, most of them with leafy leaves, do not tolerate the ingress of water on the leaves, so you can place the pots of begonias on a tray with wet peat or moss (you can use a cat litter box).
All methods are good for increasing air humidity. If you don't have a wide pan of damp pebbles, you can put a lot of small jars.
From systematic waterlogging of the soil, the leaves of the begonia slightly droop, the edges are tucked inward.
Watering frequency also depends on the size of the green mass. The larger the evaporating surface, the more moisture the plant needs.
Annually or every other year, in the spring. In a cramped pot, begonia leaves turn pale and lose their decorative effect. Nutrient soil - a mixture of humus, leaf and sod land with the addition of a small amount of coniferous soil and river sand. Begonias prefer soils that have a slightly acidic reaction when pH = 5.5 - 6.5. Some begonias, especially rhizomes (including the Rex group), prefer light, loose, well-drained soils, such that they easily absorb moisture and dry out quickly. For them, soil is made from leafy earth with the addition of pine bark, chopped fern rhizomes and sand.
Begonias are propagated by stem cuttings, leaves, part of the leaf, division and seeds. For cuttings, you need to cut off the tops of twigs about 15 cm long from small-leaved begonias, or a piece of stem with one or two leaves from large-leaved begonias. Cuttings can be placed in water for rooting, the roots appear within a week or two. When they grow 4-5 cm long, they can be squeezed into pots.
By the way, in rhizome begonias, it is enough to cut off pieces of 2-4 cm long from rhizomes and put them in bowls for rooting, preferably with soil heating, or in warm weather, when the soil temperature is not lower than 25-26 ° С.
This begonia has little light (the bush is loose, the petioles are long), moreover, salt deposits are visible on the soil.
If you water begonias without letting the soil dry out, such spots appear on the leaves, the petioles and stems rot.
Young rooted begonias should be planted in porous, well-drained soil.
How to care for begonias
All decorative leafy begonias require high air humidity. But the first problem with care is that almost all of them do not tolerate spraying, and need very good ventilation of the room. Therefore, if the room has central heating and the air temperature in winter rises above 22 ° C, then it is necessary to try to maximize the air humidity.
If you happen to be the owner of chic hybrids of begonias with pubescent leaves and a painted pattern, then it is best to purchase an air humidifier, otherwise you can place the pots on wide trays with wet pebbles (expanded clay or sphagnum moss). At the same time, the water from the sump should not get into the pot. In winter, central heating batteries will have to be covered with damp towels, which are moistened in the morning and evening. At the same time, it is not advisable to put the pots in a crowded, large, dense group, this makes ventilation difficult.
Wild begonia, Borneo. Begonias in nature grow on leafy ground - a loose pillow of decaying leaves and woody litter.
The second problem is that most begonias are not as moisture-loving as they seem. Those. increased requirements for air humidity do not mean an increased need for soil moisture. Watering should be done in moderation, so that the soil has time to dry out in the upper third or even in the upper half of the pot by the next watering. You can check this only by touching the ground with your finger.
And the third problem is weak air movement in the apartment. When the air is very humid, above 60-70%, there is always a risk of developing pathogenic microflora - a fungal and bacterial infection, from which moist brown spots appear on the leaves, roots and parts of the rhizome rot. So in the absence of air circulation, with a large crowding of plants (group plantings, closely spaced pots), the risk of developing these infections increases many times. Even if you ventilate twice a day, this is usually not enough, because in natural conditions the plants are constantly blown by the wind.
Therefore, if you have high humidity at home, and black spots - fungi - appear on the windows or walls, then you should think about not only your flowers, but also the health of all family members (allergies, asthma, etc.). Usually, fungal stains on the surface of the ceiling and walls are a sign of not just high humidity, but poor ventilation. By itself, air humidity of 50-60% is necessary and important for flowers and humans. But it is necessary to check why there is poor ventilation in the apartment: there is no ventilation, no draft, in the end, tightly closed plastic windows block oxygen.
But condensation on the windowsill does not mean at all that there is high humidity throughout the apartment. It may not be sufficient in the room. It is most correct to buy a hygrometer and find out for sure. In the event that a fungal plaque appears, the only correct solution is to install a ventilation hole in the wall.
Ornamental-deciduous begonias are mostly very shade-tolerant. They grow well on northern window sills, but farther from the window, in the back of the room, without additional lighting, it will be dark for them, it all depends on how much sun the tulle curtains let in (or what hangs on your windows). There is no concept of shade-loving plants, it was invented by people who are far from understanding how a leafy plant should look good. And many consider deciduous begonias to be shade-loving.
In fact, most begonias prefer bright, diffused light, with some direct sun in the morning or evening. Those. ideal will be east windows, north-west, north. The windows of the south and west orientation need shading, but here begonias feel bad not only from the sun, but also from the heat. In general, on especially hot days in summer, it is better to put pots with begonias on the floor, where the temperature is 2-3 ° C lower.
- Decorative blooming begonias
- Decorative foliage begonias (species)
- Family of begonias