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What conditions are everyone growing their begonias in, in the viv? What conditions to avoid? I remember trying to grow them in my first viv and they just rotted away. I have seen a lot of awesome varieties locally lately and would love to give them a shot again.

Thanks
-Justin
 

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I'm not much of a plant guy, but for some reason, I can't kill begonias. I have about six varieties and they all have to be cut back regularly. Most of my vivs are 20H, 20L, or 29-gal aquariums. With each of these I use Exo-Terra or Zoo-Med 2-bulb light fixtures with two 26-watt daylight CFL bulbs. GE makes a 26-watt bulb. Most other brands are 27 watts and I believe both brands of fixtures are rated for a max of 26 watts.

Anyway, I have fairly high humidity and the begonias are all roots in fairly damp to wet substrate. I propogate new plants by breaking a leaf off at the stalk and sticking it in wet sphagnum moss oriented nearly horizontally, rather than vertically.

All my vivs are indoors and we keep the temps between 72F and 75F. I'm sure the lights heat the vivs up during the day, but I actually haven't measured the daytime temps other than to make sure they don't exceed what the frogs thrive in.

I don't fuss with them much and cannot explain why mine do so well. It certainly isn't due to any expertise on my part.
 

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I usually skip trying to plant a begonia that's been grown as a houseplant or a windowsill plant, and toss a leaf (or leaves) into a terrarium instead. The new growth will be perfectly adapted to the tank settings! Often begonias not grown in a terrarium get a lot of shock from the change in light, humidity, and drainage. I've also seen a tendency for people to plant the crown of the plant INTO a really damp substrate, in which it will rot. Water sitting on it's leaves and crown for long periods (due to misting) is also a solid way to get rot. They like humidity around their leaves and roots, but in a really humid tank you want them in a loose substrate that drains so air can get to their roots as well - the substrates they come potted in will turn to mud, and their roots may not handle the change (they need to grow new ones), and if the leaves and/or crown are having an issue... that plant isn't coming back.

Other than the misting issue, tossing in leaves and letting them root will avoid most of thoseproblems. I also will take begonias, remove most to all of the roots (just the roots, don't mess with the main plant) and toss the whole plant on TOP of the substrate (don't put it IN the substrate!). Plant will root and orient itself correctly when it's ready, and then do it's best to take over your tank.
 

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Kero x 2, this was really helpful. Thank you!! I'm going to attempt to propagate my cool new begonia this way instead of planting.
 

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Recently jimo gave to 2 small rooted cutting of strawberry begonas and they are both doing great. I couldnt believe how fast they perked up and rerooted.
 

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Recently jimo gave to 2 small rooted cutting of strawberry begonas and they are both doing great. I couldnt believe how fast they perked up and rerooted.
Strawberry begonia isn't actually a begonia... still a really nice plant though.

KeroKero's experience with throwing them on top of the substrate and leaving them is what has worked best for me so far... after a few short weeks the whole plant will be rooted, right side up, and growing towards the light.
 

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Mine started with two small plantlets and they have just about taken over two of my grow out vivs. I have plenty if anybody wants some - just pay the postage.

Strawberry begonia isn't actually a begonia... still a really nice plant though.

KeroKero's experience with throwing them on top of the substrate and leaving them is what has worked best for me so far... after a few short weeks the whole plant will be rooted, right side up, and growing towards the light.
 
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