Grow Begonia Maculata Plant as Fast as Possible

Grow Begonia Maculata Plant as Fast as Possible

Begonia maculata is also known as the polka Dot begonia plant. It has beautiful foliage with white silver dots on them. This plant is the first choice of houseplant lovers. If you want to grow a houseplant that is easy to grow and take care of. Then the begonia family is the best option.

Begonia plants have hundreds of species and all species produce very beautiful foliage and flowers.

This begonia maculata is a short plant that grows to medium height when grown in a container. Outdoor growing begonias achieves good height than indoor growing polka dot begonias.

You can grow these plants in your garden or in containers. These eye-catching plants look very beautiful in stylish containers.

In this guide, you will know how to grow and care for polka dot begonia maculata plants.

Let’s start:

About the plant

The plant only grows 1.5 meters tall with a 20cm extended leaf size. On first look, you will see the upper surface of the leaves is dark green. Whereas the reverse side of the leaves is red in color. In general, leaves are red, maroon, or pink. Every leaf has white or silver spots on the upper surface. Sometimes these dots look unnatural. They look like someone paint the foliage of the plant with silver color dots.

This is the magic of mother nature.

The plant produces flowers in cluster form. In the initial blooming stage, it has white flowers that change their color as they mature (white to light pink).

The size of the plant, shape, and color of foliage depends on the type of begonia you grow. If your plant is not producing flowers or it looks weak. This means you are doing something wrong. Growing a plant from seeds or cutting required gardening knowledge.

Especially in the case of indoor growing plants. Because outdoor growing begonias get everything from nature like the sunlight, fresh air, nutrients from the soil.

The problem comes with indoor growing polka dot begonias. In this case, a grower has to feed the plant. And take care of its all-growing needs.

To find out more about growing and caring begonia read the below part.

begonia_maculata

Quick Care Guide

Common Name Begonia maculata, polka dot begonia
Light Bright in-direct light
Soil Well draining
Temperature 15 to 24 Degrees C
Water Weekly watering
Height 1.5 meter tall
Pest & Diseases Aphids, Spider mites & Root rot
Flower time Mid-summer to early autumn

Growing Begonia Maculata Plants

To grow this plant, you need to first decide how to want to grow it. This means that you want to grow it as a container plant or as an outdoor ornamental plant. Remember that indoor plants need little extra care than outdoor growing plants. Below written are the universal polka dot begonias growing steps.

     You May also Like: How to grow Aloe Vera plants?

Light

Most of the new growers think that this plant is a low-light plant. But in reality, it needs few hours of direct sunlight. No doubt it cannot tolerate long hours of direct sunlight. But a minimum of 3 hours of direct sun rays is necessary for better health.

Now the question is which part of the day is best to put it on the sunny window. Morning sunlight is best for houseplants. Because in the morning time sun emits low intense light waves. These light waves are warm which is a good thing.

Because warm sun rays do not harm the plant in fact these sun rays make your plants strong.

So, if you have begonia plants at home give them 3 hours of morning sunlight. Otherwise, your plants will grow weak and lanky. They easily get affected by plant diseases and do not produce flowers.

Low flowers are also linked with a low light environment.

Outdoor growing begonias need shade from 11 Am to 4 Pm. Locate a place in your garden where they can get indirect bright light. Or grow them with other tall plants.

If your plant is still getting sunlight between 11 to 4. Then take a cotton cloth and make a shed off it over the plant in some way. Plant two bamboo poles on the sides of the plant and tie cloth to block light.

begonia maculata foliage

Water

Watering polka dot begonias is the tricky part. Because this plant needs moist soil to grow but do not like frequent watering. So, before watering the plant you need to check the soil. If the soil feels dry give some water to it. If it has some moisture wait for another day and check again. Regular soil check-ups are necessary to keep the plant healthy. Root rot is a common problem in houseplants. This problem is a result of overwatering.

Once you find out how to water begonias you can grow any type of houseplant. Because most of the houseplants have the same watering needs.

Water requirements of polka dot begonia also depend on the temperature in the growing area and season. In the summer season, this plant needs more water. You may have to water once every 3 days.

But in winters your plant needs lees water (weekly or bi-weekly).

The simple watering method is to water your plants when they start to drop their leaves.

Temperature

The begonia maculata is a tropical plant so it cannot survive in cold weather. Indoor temperature is good for growing begonia maculata. Because even in winter we set our thermostats between 15 degrees C to 22 Degrees C. This is the perfect temperature range for houseplants.

The problem comes with outdoor growing begonia plants. They die when the temperature drops below 10 degrees C.

Do not put the indoor growing plant near the heating vents. Because the continuous flow of hot air keeps the plant and soil dry. Dryness is a deadly condition for tropical plants.

Humidity

As it is native to tropical forests. It needs a high humidity environment to thrive. Dealing with humidity is a common problem for indoor growers. The good news is the humidity that we have indoor is perfect for this plant. Not no need to make any change in humid levels.

If you feel your plant is suffering from low humidity. Then buy a humidifier or put the plant on a pebble tray.

Or

you can put the plant in the bathroom for 24 hours. Because that is the place in our homes where we have high humidity. Do not put the plant for more than 24 hours and do not close the door. It also needs fresh air to grow. After 24 hours take out the plant and put it in a suitable location.

Note: Do not mist water on the plant leaves because begonias are prone to powdery mildew.

Fertilizer

Because this is a flowering plant so it needs some amount of fertilizer. Use any normal grade houseplant fertilizer. Use half-strength then the recommended on the nutrient pack. If the pack says you need 1 cup of water to dilute it use 2 cups of water.

The fertilizing begonias help them to produce a good number of flowers and healthy foliage. This also keeps the plants healthy and disease-free. To increases, the disease resistance power of maculata fertilizes it once in 20 days.

Remember that you need to fertilize the plant only in its active growing stage (spring and summer). Winter is the rest time for the plants they do not grow in this time. So do not waste the fertilizer by giving them in winters.

Soil

The soil should be well-draining soil. No doubt plant likes to grow in moist soil but they do not like wet or soggy soil. If your gardening budget allows you then you can buy specially made potting soil for houseplants. If the low budget is a problem then you can make potting soil at home.

All you need to do is buy perlite and add it to the normal garden soil. The mixture should be 60 % garden soil and 30 % perlite + 10 % sandy soil. Now your homemade potting soil is ready. Use this soil to grow houseplants that need good draining soil.

Flowers on Begonia Maculata: The plant produces beautiful flowers from mid-summer to early autumn. To encourage the bloom, you need to fertilize your plants as mentioned above. If you do not want flowers then just fertilize 2 to 3 times per year.

propagating begonias

Propagation

Cut the healthy stem below the bud, remove all the leaves by leaving a few on the top. For the propagation, winter is the best time because in winter plant does not produce a bloom. Once you have the cutting put it in the glass of water. Place this glass away from direct sunlight. Let the cutting inside the glass until it develops roots. Once you see the roots it’s time to transfer cuttings to the pot.

The soil should be loose and well-draining. Use potting soil for growing plants from cuttings.

Growing problems

The plant is easy to grow and care so it does not get affected by common plant problems. But there are some pests and plant diseases that may affect your plant. If you don’t give proper care to your plants.

Pests & Diseases

While growing houseplants you need to keep eye on them. Pests like aphids, spider mites, mealybugs are common enemies of houseplants. They like to eat and live on the begonia maculata plant. Once you see them treat them immediately. Otherwise, your other houseplants will get affected by them.

Use a neem oil spray to kill them and also to prevent them in the future.

If your plant is healthy you can still use spray neem oil for the safety of your plant.

Powdery mildew and root rot are the two common diseases that affect the begonias plants. Both the diseases are the result of wrong watering. Excess watering results in root rot and powdery mildew is triggered by misting water on the foliage.

Toxicity

Polka dot plants are not toxic to anybody. They are no toxic plants but they may cause irritation and vomiting. So, it is best to keep the children away from them. Don’t worry about the pets they are smarter than us. Nature gives them a strong nose to know what is good or bad for them.

How to grow UK’s Best Aloe Vera at Home in Containers

How to grow UK’s Best Aloe Vera at Home in Containers

Aloe Vera plant has many health and skin benefits. It is a well-known plant over the globe and if you want to grow aloe vera at home then you should know the following things before planting aloe vera.

This post is about growing aloe vera at home in easy way.

How to grow an Aloe Vera plant with no growing experience?

You need to take care of 7 things to grow Aloe Vera at home and these are

Light, Temperature, Water, Fertilizer, Container, Soil, and pest control.

Let’s look into all points

LIGHT

Every plant needs light to do photosynthesis. This is a process by which they make their food from light energy. Where other plants required direct sunlight. The good news is Aloe Vera plant does not need direct light. This means you don’t need to put in the direct sunlight also don’t have to buy a grow light for the Aloe Vera plant.

Just grow it in a pot and place it outside in indirect sunlight and in cold weather bring it inside. Your normal home lights are enough for the plant to full fil its light requirements.

Direct bright light can burn the Aloe Vera plant. Therefore, try to place it in the shade especially if you are going to place the aloe] vera pot outside.

Temperature

 Temperature is crucial for every plant that you grow at home. The advantage of indoor gardening is you can grow any plant at any time of the year. Because the indoor grow equipment gives you full control over the light and temperature. In grow tents, you can create summer-like conditions in winters.

But for Aloe Vera, you don’t need to buy a grow tent. It can survive without any problem in temperatures between 10 to 30 degrees Celsius. We have temperature inside our home about 18 to 26 degrees (excellent for Aloe Vera plant).

Watering Aloe Vera plants

Aloe Vera plant has Aloe Vera gel in it and the plant uses water to make this gel which means it needs a good amount of water. The interesting part is it needs more water but not frequent water.

In simple words, you need to give sufficient water to Aloe Vera at once and then give the same amount of water next week on the same day.

Before watering Aloe vera it is best to check the soil conditions. If the upper two inches of soil feel dry. Then you need to water the Aloe vera immediately. If the soil feels moist wait until it gets semi-dry.

Fertilizers for growing Aloe vera at home

Use high-quality potting soil to give all necessary nutrients to the plant and you don’t have to give it any extra nutrients to grow. Some growers give a little boost of nitrogen to speed up the growth but it is not necessary. Good pre-fertilized soil can take care of everything that Aloe Vera needs (Nutrients).

Aloe Vera Container

You can use any container to grow Aloe Vera at home. In fact, you can make your own container by using useless plastic buckets. Just make a half-inch hole at the bottom and your home-made container is ready.

While choosing a container make sure it is good for air circulation. Professional gardeners recommend using clay pots for growing plants because they have tiny pores in them. The air circulates around the roots through these pores.

Plastic containers don’t allow air to enter and plant only receive fresh air from the top. But this is not a problem in the case of the Aloe Vera plant. Plastic containers are good for growing Aloe Vera at home.

For the best affordable solution, you can use Grow Bag to grow aloe vera plants at your home.

Best Soil to Grow Aloe Vera at home

If you use garden soil you need to give it a heat treatment to kill the bacteria before bringing it inside your home. Or your plan is to grow it outside according to the season you can use garden soil freely. In my opinion for indoor Aloe Vera plants, Potting mix is good to be used. You need to give nutrients separately if you use potting mix.

Potting soil has all the nutrients for the plant but potting mix do not contain any amount of nutrients.

Pests and diseases

Generally, the plant does not get infected by any disease unless you overwater the plant. This develops the root rot conditions along with other fungus diseases. Overwatering also attracts Mealybugs and other pests.

Root rooting, Soft roots, Fungal Steam are all result of excess watering. Avoid excess watering and your plant will not get any disease.

What are the main benefits of Indoor Aloe Vera?

Heal burns and bites

Improve skin condition

Improve digestion

Good for Detoxification

Purify air

Heal burns and bits

Aloe Vera gel has healing properties and they come from the Ascorbic acid, zinc, and Polysaccharides found in the gel.

It can easily Heal the sunburn and heat burn. The Aloe Vera gel gives an instant cool feeling when it is applied to burned skin.

If you have an insect bite apply the fresh Aloe vera gel on it. This will reduce the pain and inflammation.

Improve Skin Condition

Hydration is the key to beautiful, young, and glowing skin. Aloe Vera gel has excellent hydrating properties and this is the reason most of the hydrating creams, moisturizers contain this ingredient. In fact, now you can buy face moisturizers that have pure Aloe Vera gel. 

Some people have allergies to other skin moisturizing ingredients. Their skin became red or they develop red spots when they apply chemical contained skin moisturizers.

Aloe vera gel is the world’s first natural moisturizer that you can use in all seasons. It does not make your skin greasy and oily in summers. In fact, it acts as a protective barrier between your skin and environmental pollutants.

Improve digestion

Aloe Vera juice is available in the market you can buy from the supermarket or you can make it at home by watching a Youtube video. The juice helps to clean your digestive tract this improves the digestion of food and other drinks.

For individuals having problems with bowel movement, Aloe Vera juice is the perfect remedy to keep everything normal in a few days.

Good for Detoxification

Indoor grown Aloe Vera provide you the opportunity to detox your internal systems without consuming costly medicines.  Aloe Vera juice keeps your body and organs free of toxins. If you smoke or drink alcohol add Aloe Vera juice to your diet to recover quickly from the harmful effects of these habits

Air Purification

Not only Aloe Vera but every indoor-grown plant cleans the air in which you and your family breathe. Plants absorb carbon and release fresh oxygen in the air. Humans need fresh oxygen to breathe and to live long.  So, grow some plants at home and get free fresh oxygen for years.