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How to Stop Tuberous Begonia


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Tuberous begonias, unlike other begonia varieties, grow upward from an underground tuber that can easily be dug up and transplanted or discarded. Begonia tubers resemble small flattened russet potatoes. The tubers throw ancillary roots and reproduce asexually by growing baby tubers, which then mature to grow plant stems, leaves and blooms. To completely remove tuberous begonias you need only to dig up the tubers and main root stems, which can easily be done with manual garden tools.

Difficulty:
Moderate

Instructions

things you’ll need:
  • Small hand trowel Hand cultivator Long-handle hoe, shovel and rake Pots or trash bag
    1. Cut off or rake away most of the above-the-surface plant material so the main root stems can be identified. Set aside the plant tops for the compost pile or the trash.
    2. Dig down about 6 to 8 inches along each root stem with your cultivator until you reach the tuber. Loosen the soil around the tuber and pull up on the tuber, keeping the main tuber intact.
    3. Dig up and overturn the soil surrounding the main tuber to look for any offspring tubers. Lift each one out in one piece and discard. Repeat Steps 2 and 3 for as many main root stems as you have.
    4. Remove the main root stems and any ancillary root systems with your hand trowel or rake and discard.

Tips & Warnings

  • When digging up large-scale plantings, use a long-handle hoe or shovel to make it easier on your back and knees. If only a small colony of tuberous begonias need to be removed, a small hand trowel or cultivator works well.

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