A tender perennial known for both prolific blooms and stunning foliage often bedecked with silver highlights, the angel wing begonia thrives well in containers, hanging baskets and garden beds alike. A notoriously easy plant to grow, these begonias also boast easy propagation. Quick to root and fast-growing, these plants thrive well with minimal intrusion. Just a few stem or leaf cuttings allow these plants to multiply your supply fast in a matter of weeks.
things you’ll need:
- Angel wing begonia
- Potting soil
- Choose a healthy leaf for cutting. Select a mature leaf from the current year’s growth. Cuttings harvested the day after watering seem to fare the best during propagation.
- Prepare the rooting containers. Containers can be anything from disposable cups to plastic totes or flower pots. Add nutrient-rich potting soil, about an inch or two to the mix. Water the mix and allow it to drain completely.
- Trim the leaf cuttings. Remove the outer edges of the leaves with scissors. Then, cut the remaining piece of the leaf in half or thirds, depending on the leaf size, into wedge shapes.
- Insert the cuttings into the soil mixture and cover with clear plastic. The success of the cuttings is dependent on the humidity level in the container, so leave this in place until the cuttings form new growth.
- Water the cuttings according to soil conditions. Do not allow the soil to dry out, as the cuttings and new growth are very sensitive at this stage. Do not over-water as this could suffocate the baby plants and cause rotting.
- Check for growth. Within 2-3 weeks, the cuttings will have new growth. They can be transplanted to new containers, or can remain in their containers until they outgrow them.
Propagating Angel Wing Begonias by Stem Cuttings
- Select a stem cutting. Cuttings should be at least 3 inches long, and should have three healthy leaves at the tip of the stem. Cuttings taken the day after watering tend to perform better than cuttings taken at other times.
- Prepare a container with fresh, clean water. The container may be a glass, mug or other water-retaining container.
- Remove excess leaves from the stem. The stem should be devoid of leaves up to the water line in the container. Remove the extra leaves, but the three at the tip must remain intact.
- Root the cutting. Place the cutting into the water, and place the container in a sunny location. Within a week or two, you will see new roots beginning to form. Once the roots are formed, the plant can be transplanted into soil.