Tuesday, 2 December 2014

How to Overwinter Begonias in a Vase

It has been over ten days of no sewing here. Felt really odd and I did miss colours in the gloomy days, so I was happy to prepare the flowers for winter last week. I will tell you how I overwinter my begonias. Mine are Waterfall Encanto Begonias and every effort to keep them totally worths every minute it takes.

We had two different begonias this year, not counting the one that spent the winter at home /shown here/. So I needed colour coding and did it the simplest way possible.I will show you both the overwintering and the colour coding methods I like here.

You may decide to bring the pots inside. It is good for the plant, but it is difficult to provide the space and temperature it requires. So I chose simpler way - stems. Cuttings take almost no space, require less maintenance and are forgiving. More on this later.

How to overwinter your Begonias in a vase step by step

  1. You need to choose the length you would like. Than just cut, or just pick the stems. I chose 20cm /8"/. Thus leaving almost the same length on the root.
  2. Make sure you do it plant by plant, colour by colour or separate them accordingly while you cut. At this time flowers are few. Although leaves and stems are different, with the low November light they might look quite alike, so keep them separate. On the /October/ picture above the red variety is on the upper left and the rest is orange. November cutting are shown bellow:
  3. Lay them, keeping different colours apart in small bunches. If you have other plants to overwinter, fine, keep them separate too. I have fuchsias here /the no leaves stems on the right/
  4. Take a ribbon and tie loosely each stem with the appropriate colour. In my case - 2 colours and just 3 red cuttings - I tied only 3 red ribbons, leaving all the orange stems untied/unmarked/.
  5. Take a deep vase. Nontransparent one is better
  6. Poor no more than an inch of water in it /less than 3cm/.
  7. Place the stems in the vase, making sure they reach the water.
  8. Place the vase in a light and cool place.
  9. Check the water level every week or two, depending on temperature and the amount of leaves in vase.
  10. The first few weeks may require removing lower leaves and changing water /due to dying leaves/
  11. You need some water not much of it - think of it as "as little as possible" water in the vase.
  12. The stems will root in a few weeks. They will even survive a few cycles of drying up and producing new roots. I know you can guess how I knew this... yes, last winter experience...
Same colour coding will work for Geraniums packed in pots for the winter - just gave each one a lose, ribbon knot matching their flowers colour. It is safer than a pot label as it will never fall no matter how many times you reorganize or move them, no letters will fade, it will be there till spring. I will colour code the geraniums I saved on Monday today.

And here is my weekend gift:

sea rose in a vase
The roses were bought home on Saturday - they were flowering by the sea and I hope I will be able to make them root and grow at home this winter.

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