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+10 Tuberous Begonias

+35Tuberous Begonias

In the event you admire crops that haven’t any hesitation in boldly pointing out their presence with large, nearly artificially very best flora, then tuberous begonias are for you. Whilst some might to find them moderately too overstated, downright brazen even, when you like color, and various it, with subtlety an possibility moderately than obligatory, then glance no additional.

Flowering from overdue spring, as the times exceed 13 hours lengthy, till nicely into autumn when the foliage dies again, those tuberous-rooted perennials had been broadly hybridised and subtle to the purpose the place the larger-flowered paperwork are not anything in need of impressive. For the ones with greenhouses or an overly gentle iciness local weather there are even varieties that flower nicely into iciness, if now not all over the cooler months.

Description and classification and teams

Begonias are amongst the ones handy crops the place the right kind title could also be the typical title. The genus is located within the tropics and subtropics, specifically within the Americas, and is made up of round 900 species with 130-odd in cultivation, from which many cultivars and hybrids had been evolved. Those backyard paperwork had been divided into Eight primary classes. They’re:

1. Cane-like, that have slender, upright stems with conspicuous leaf nodes and evergreen foliage.

2. Shrub-like, which might be hairy crops with branching stems.

3. Thick-stemmed, which resemble the cane-like however with a lot heavier stems that every now and then shape a trunk.

4. Semperflorens, which might be the fibrous rooted varieties normally handled as summer-flowering bedding annuals.

5. Rhizomatous, that could be evergreen or deciduous and which might be frequently grown as a lot for his or her foliage as for his or her flora.

6. Rex-cultorum, which might be the fancy-leaved Rex begonias which might be normally grown as space crops.

7. Tuberous, that have thickened tuberous roots and which normally die again over iciness or, in terms of the winter-flowering varieties, that could be dried off at another time.

8. Trailing Scandent, which might be pendulous, ever-blooming crops frequently with lengthy internodes and which must now not be at a loss for words with the trailing tuberous begonias.

So workforce seven it’s, but despite the fact that somewhat a couple of begonia species have tuberous roots, once we communicate of tuberous begonias we are in most cases regarding the fancy-flowered workforce of garden-raised crops referred to as Begonia &instances; tuberhybrida. Advanced principally from South American species, they first seemed in Europe in 1867, simply 3 years after the advent of essentially the most influential of the early mother or father species, Begonia pearcei. Since that point 1000’s of hybrids had been raised and we have tuberous begonias in a variety of styles and sizes of flower and expansion dependancy.

There are small- medium- and large-flowered hybrids; they’ll have unmarried, semi-double or totally rose- or camellia-like double flora; they is also small and mound-forming, trailing or upright to just about a metre tall. And whilst the flora are impressive, do not forget about the foliage. As a result of despite the fact that not like say the Rex begonias, tuberous begonias are by no means grown for his or her foliage on my own, their velvety, deep inexperienced leaves upload a wealthy luxuriance this is the easiest foil to the flora, which might indisputably be decreased with out the distinction of the leaves.


So, tuberous begonias are gorgeous. I do not want to inform you that, the photographs discuss for themselves, however how do you get the most productive out of them? Neatly, as backyard crops they are now not for everybody and now not for each location, even though with cautious variety and siting you can be stunned at simply how nicely they develop outdoor in lots of portions of New Zealand.

Begonias have a desire for cool, wet stipulations and a local weather that does not be afflicted by extremes of summer time warmth or iciness chilly. They want vivid gentle to flower nicely however must be out of direct daylight, particularly throughout the warmth of the day, and so they additionally want safe haven from sturdy winds or the flora might brown on the edges and the comfortable foliage is also torn or bent. Tuberous begonias flower very best with humus-rich soil, various moisture and common feeding.

Given the ones necessities it is not sudden that many gardeners make a choice to domesticate tuberous begonias indoors, as conservatory, shadehouse or cool greenhouse crops. Alternatively, when you’ve got a vivid southerly dealing with place on your backyard or a shaded spot dealing with north, then begonias will thrive outdoor too, specifically in spaces that do not frequently revel in drought in summer time.

Robust solar and wind, particularly scorching dry winds, are the primary enemies; gentle soil that dries out temporarily does not lend a hand both. However in a evenly shaded, sheltered place with soil that has been totally ready with various well-rotted compost tuberous begonias will flower from early summer time to the primary frosts. And all that you want do is to stake the tall growers to bamboo canes (specialist nurseries inventory cord frames), take away any spent flora, stay the soil wet and upload a bit of liquid fertiliser each week.

In the event you to find that the super-fancy large-flowered paperwork are merely now not difficult sufficient on your backyard, do not surrender. As an alternative take a look at one of the crucial smaller-flowered hybrids. The little Multiflora varieties, frequently referred to as Flamboyant Begonias, are very resilient. Grown as massed bedding or in clusters, they are maximum frequently observed with vivid pink flora, which frequently nearly conceal the foliage, but additionally happen in orange and a rather weaker yellow-flowered shape.

Nonstop begonias are crosses between the Multifloras and the bigger flowered varieties. As you’ll be expecting they are of intermediate top and vigour. They flower regularly, even in iciness if stored indoors, and are to be had in a variety of colors. Nonstops are F1 hybrids so there’s no level in saving the seed and any seedpods must be got rid of to stay the crops flowering. Reiger begonias, evolved from Begonia &instances; hiemalis, are identical.

And if open beds do not appear to paintings, imagine rising your begonias in pots in an effort to to find simply the precise position for them. The upright varieties flower and develop nicely however are moderately brittle, necessitating staking. The trailing varieties, frequently Begonia boliviensis hybrids, have extra versatile, pendulous stems and when grown in striking baskets they’re easy-care crops that make an excellent display. Trailing begonias normally do very best in sphagnum-lined cord baskets moderately than forged pots, their roots appreciating the cool wet sphagnum.

Disbudding and deadheading

Begonias have separate female and male flora. Typically one extensive feminine flower is subtended by way of two smaller male flora. Getting rid of the male flora ahead of they mature will permit the showy feminine flora to achieve their complete measurement and also will save you the improvement of seedpods that might reduce the plant’s vigour. Previous flora must be got rid of as soon as previous their very best. They snap off simply and doing this now not handiest encourages new blooms to shape, it additionally is helping save you fungal sicknesses that might increase some of the decaying petals.

Pests and sicknesses

Begonias are neither specifically liable to nor immune to pests. Slugs and snail relish the younger shoots and the mature foliage, quite a lot of caterpillars might chunk the foliage, rasping and sap-sucking creatures similar to thrips, aphids and mealy insects is also provide, however with a bit of consideration and regimen care, pests can normally be stopped ahead of they get out of keep an eye on.

Extra of an issue are fungal sicknesses, particularly comfortable rots, mold and botrytis. Broken stems can temporarily change into comfortable, watery and rotten and this will likely result in the eventual cave in of the plant. Virtually inevitably the foliage will increase mold in overdue autumn – it is simply a part of the iciness die-back procedure – however mold too can happen throughout the rising season. Just right air flow is going some distance in opposition to controlling the severity of fungal sicknesses, maintaining the foliage and stems fairly dry additionally is helping, even though spraying with a fungicide it will likely be vital too.

Wintry weather care

As flower manufacturing lessens from mid-autumn, reduce on watering and feeding and make allowance your begonias to dry off. Whilst the foliage must dry, brown and fall away with out too many issues, do stay an eye fixed open for any fungal sicknesses that might unfold to the tubers.

As soon as the foliage has dried, the tubers is also lifted or got rid of from their pots for iciness garage. This is not at all times vital in gentle iciness spaces, however the place arduous frosts or extended rainy stipulations are most probably it is a good suggestion. The tubers can also be saved in slightly wet sawdust or some other somewhat dry, inert medium, similar to damp, shredded newspaper. Replant them (concave facet up) in spring as the brand new shoots seem. Duvet the tubers with a couple of centimetres of soil, as they sprout roots from the tops too.

The exceptions to the method are the winter-flowering Begonia &instances; hiemalis hybrids, which end result from crossing Begonia &instances; tuberhybrida with Begonia socotrana, a species from an Indian Ocean island off the coast of Yemen. Broadly bought as Reiger or “blush” begonias, those crops begin to flower from overdue summer time and can stay in leaf and flower till spring. Clearly those crops, which might be totally illiberal of frost, desire a very gentle, benign iciness to develop outdoor. Alternatively, they’re very adaptable to indoor cultivation and are an excellent selection for winter-flowering space crops that may spend the summer time outdoor within the backyard.


There are a number of techniques to propagate tuberous begonias, the process used various with they form of plant.


Sow purchased seed to supply F1 hybrids such because the Nonstops or to get a brand new crop of lively younger crops.

Begonia seed may be very superb, dust-like in reality. It is so superb that it does not normally are available seed packets, the place it will be misplaced within the folds, however in glass phials that should be snapped open ahead of sowing. Pelleted seeds are a lot more straightforward to deal with, idea they don’t seem to be at all times readily to be had.

The seed wishes light and heat to germinate. It must be sown in spring, exposed, in heated trays. Stay the seed simply wet till it germinates. The younger seedlings develop temporarily and are quickly big enough to pot. When small they’re delicate to draughts and temperature fluctuations and must be stored beneath duvet till spring is easily settled into early summer time.

Get ready your backyard beds with high-humus compost and natural fertiliser and as the foliage will probably be delicate, plant out when the elements isn’t too scorching and sunny.


Mature crops have extensive tubers that divide readily and department is a great way to temporarily produce established, robust crops. Divide the tubers in spring when replanting. They slice simply with a pointy knife however as a result of discovering the rising ‘eyes’ can also be tricky stay your divisions at the extensive facet. To stop fungal sicknesses, filth the minimize surfaces with sulphur powder and make allowance them to dry ahead of planting.


Maximum tuberous begonias will develop from cuttings and that is a particularly excellent means of establishing up extensive shares of the small-flowered Multiflora varieties for massed bedding. The recent spring and early summer time shoots make the most productive cuttings and can strike in no time beneath gentle humid stipulations. You’ll proceed to take cuttings nicely into summer time however until the brand new crops can increase fairly sized tubers ahead of iciness they are going to more than likely now not live on till the next spring.

Like most of the space plant begonias, Begonia &instances; hiemalis is frequently raised from leaf cuttings. This comes to getting rid of a mature leaf, cutting throughout its veins and pinning the leaf down on wet soil. A heat humid atmosphere, similar to an enclosed propagation tray, is very important. Additionally, you must get started in spring in order that the younger crops are well-established ahead of iciness.

Begonia presentations

Public gardens frequently use tuberous begonias of their presentations and it will one of the vital very best techniques to peer a variety of flower varieties.


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