Wednesday, January 30, 2008


photos from Martin Witter
Begonias where do they come from?
If you draw two lines around the earth between the ‘Tropic of Cancer’ and ‘Tropic of Capricorn’ in between those lines you will find a natural habitat of begonias.
There is every type of growing habit you can think of. Within this band there are many mini climates: Rain forests, cloud forests, mountain peaks, high plateaus, deep valleys, wide valleys, plains, and coastal beaches. Temperatures in these areas go from steamy heat to below freezing, and humidity varies too. Begonias are found in almost all climates, mostly but not exclusively, near water. There is a begonia to suit all types of conditions and growing skills.

Knowing the geographical distribution helps in understanding their care. They come from wooded areas, so they do not want full sunshine, but want a bright position. Too much sun burns the leaves. Keep them in a shaded greenhouse or indoors in a North, East or West window All plants are grown with a minimum temperature of 55F.

Keep these tips in mind when growing all types of begonias.

Spray against powder mildew as a prevention once a fortnight.
Begonias do not like:
Stagnant air
Leaf shine
Dry air
Water logging
Dense soil
Dark position in winter
Direct sunlight
Too much fertiliser
Cold feet