How to Set Begonia Seeds

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Begonias provide long-lasting color, whether they are grown in garden beds or as houseplants. There are several varieties of begonia separated into two categories: tuberous rooted or fibrous rooted. All tuberous rooted begonias can be started from seeds. Of the fibrous begonias, wax begonia varieties are most often grown from seed and not root division. Begonia seedlings take many months to flower and must be seeded in December or January to get blooms by early summer.

Difficulty:
Moderately Easy

Instructions

things you’ll need:
  • Flat
  • Drip tray
  • Potting mixture
  • Plastic wrap
    1. Fill a seed-starting flat with a moistened soil-less potting mixture. Leave a ½-inch space between the top of the potting mixture and the rim of the tray. Set the flat inside a drip tray.
    2. Place the begonia seeds on the soil surface, spacing them 2 inches apart in all directions. Press each seed lightly into the soil, but do not cover the seed, as begonias need light to germinate.
    3. Cover the flat with a layer of plastic wrap, which helps retain moisture in the soil during germination. Set the flat in a 70 degree Fahrenheit area with bright, indirect light.
    4. Remove the plastic once sprouts appear, usually within two weeks of sowing.
    5. Water the seedlings often enough that soil remains moist but doesn’t become soggy. Fill the drip tray with water. Allow the soil to soak up moisture until the soil surface in the flat becomes moist. Empty the the tray of excess water.

Tips & Warnings

  • Transplant the seedlings into individual pots once they produce their third set of leaves. Waiting longer leads to tangled roots inside the flat.

  • Transplant begonia seedlings outdoors once all frost danger is passed in spring.

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