The proper storage of tuber begonia in winter is of interest to many beginner growers, because the plant, due to its heat loving ability, is not able to winter in open ground. Therefore, during the cold weather, you have to dig up begonia tubers and put them in storage, providing the plant with peace. Only with the right wintering will it be possible to count on lush flowering in the coming season.
Preparing begonias for winter
With the advent of September, all buds are removed from begonia, which will ensure the accumulation of nutrients in the tubers. After the accumulation of nutrients, a dormant period begins. You should not hurry with digging up tubers: a plant can survive short-term frosts in the autumn period without any problems. It should be borne in mind that this option is appropriate for adult plants with large tubers.
Digging is done with a sharp shovel, garden fork or pitchfork along with a lump of land (no need to shake the ground), while avoiding damage to tubers and roots. Tubers, after being removed from the ground, are sorted by size. If you adhere to the recommendations of experienced gardeners, then planting material less than 2 cm should be separated from large, as small tubers are prone to drying out. Then the tuber begonia along with an earthen lump is placed in boxes and transferred to a ventilated and dry room with a temperature of + 14 ... + 16 ° C for 2 weeks, while watering must be reduced. When the processes are completely dry, they are pruned with a sharp secateurs, leaving 2-3 cm above the ground. After 2 weeks, the tubers are cleaned of the earth, sprinkled in boxes with peat or dry sand for further storage.
How to store begonia tubers in winter
How to store tubers
How to keep begonia tubers until spring? There are several storage methods, and each grower selects the best option for himself, depending on his capabilities. Living in a private house, planting material can be stored in the basement. Peat, sand or sawdust is used as a filler for filling tubers. Such components will save as much planting material as possible until the spring. It is important to know that it is not worth holding tubers in the cellar, since it has very high humidity, which will negatively affect the storage of begonias. In winter, planting material is periodically examined for rot and disease.
If begonia is grown in an apartment, then to save tubers, planting material is placed in cool places, for example, near a balcony door. In this case, storage can be carried out in two ways:
- In the pots. If begonia was grown at home, then its storage is possible directly in pots. The dead aboveground part is cut off, and the containers themselves are transferred to a cool place. Begonia is watered periodically in the winter so that the soil does not dry completely.
- In a box or drawers. Planting material is placed in a box and covered with sawdust, peat or sand. Recently, more and more for this purpose use vermiculite, which allows you to save begonia until spring.
In early March, potted plants will sprout. At this time, the tubers are removed and transplanted into new soil. Another option to keep begonia in the winter is a refrigerator. After drying, the tubers are placed in plastic bags in which holes are pre-made and filled with sawdust.
After preparing the planting material in the described manner, the packages are placed in a vegetable box, where storage will take place at the optimum temperature regime.
Proper wintering of begonias is possible subject to the following rules:
- The dormant period of the flower continues until the end of February. At earlier times, plants need not be planted.
- It is best to store begonia in winter in sandboxes, avoiding plastic bags.
- Periodically, the tubers are turned over. When rot is detected, the soft parts are cut off, and the cut points are sprinkled with wood ash.
Overwintered planting material, before planting in the spring, it is necessary to germinate. In this case, the tubers are placed at a certain distance from each other, leaving 3-4 cm above the surface of the soil (sand). To obtain sprouts, the soil surface is moistened with water.
Storage of first-year tubers
Depending on age, begonia tubers can be stored in winter in different ways. If this is a first-year seedling, then in winter the top of a young plant remains green, it does not need to be cut. The plant should be in a pot during the cold season. Since the flower retains leaves, they need lighting. Young tubers should be stored in a ventilated, bright place at a temperature not exceeding + 15 ° C and humidity more than 50%. Periodically (every 2-3 weeks) planting material is watered, you can spray it. It is important to avoid waterlogging, which will lead to decay. If the first-year tubers are provided with the same conditions as for adults, then the probability of their drying out is high. Therefore, care for young plants should be correct.
Experienced flower growers recommend doing the following:
- In September, plant nutrition is stopped.
- When laying begonias of buds in September-October, they must be cut off.
- As the topsoil is dried, watering is carried out. The soil is moistened along the contour of the tank, while water should not fall on the tuber.
- A prerequisite is lighting. With a lack of light, the stem is stretched.
- In winter, begonia can be stored on a window on the east side of the house, while taking into account that the heating system dries the air and raises the temperature. In this case, a container of water is placed on the windowsill.
- Feeding is excluded. In winter, the plant does not need nutrients. In the event of their excess, rotting of the roots is possible.
After the nodule gives new stems, the overwintered cuttings can be cut and put to root.
The Basics of Successful Care
How to care for begonias after wintering
In early spring, begonia begins the following growth phase: tubers begin to germinate. Now plants need more intensive care, which boils down to more light, moisture, which ensures rapid growth. After winter, debris, soil is removed from planting material and placed in prepared soil. In this case, a pot or box can be used. Each tuber should have at least 5x5 cm of area. In order for the indoor flower to sprout, the tuber is deepened into the soil, having placed the back side to the light, while they are only half closed. An excellent substrate for germinating begonias is the following composition: peat, humus (compost), rotted leaves with sand in a ratio of 1: 1: 1: 2.
After disembarkation, further care involves transferring the container to the light in a room with a temperature of + 15 ... + 18 ° C and a humidity of more than 50%. Begonia grows unevenly for several weeks. During this period, the plant needs protection from direct sunlight and drafts, while enclosed spaces should be avoided. Growth promoters can be used to accelerate germination.
With the appearance of the first leaves, the plants are removed from the box and planted in pots. The base of the shoots should be completely covered with humus and ash. In this state, the plants are left until the threat of return frosts passes.
Some experts recommend that the care include periodic hardening of begonias, from which the plant discards some leaves, which is considered the norm. When the warm weather is established, the begonias are planted in open ground: the soil should be loose with sand. At least 15x15 cm of area is allocated to one tuber, 30x30 cm for large tubers. After planting, the soil is covered with humus and ash.
Soil moisture should be monitored and water stagnation avoided. The most useful watering is morning. The lush growth and development of the buds is achieved by creating a humid climate. With a high height of the bush, care involves tying the stem to avoid damage. Begonia in winter requires more attention, but the splendor of this plant is worth it. Improper storage during the winter will result in poor flowering during the summer. Typically, problems arise with beginner gardeners. If the plants did not tolerate winter well, then in the future you need to try to avoid these mistakes. Now you know how to store begonia tubers in the cold season and how to plant plants in spring.