Q:

How to Care for Hanging Begonias?

A:

Hanging containers of tuberous begonias brighten up a porch or balcony in summer and early fall. To care for them, you need suitable containers, soilless potting mix, mulch and fertilizer.

  1. Choose a location

    Tuberous begonias should be hung in areas with shade or partial shade. Direct sunlight burns the leaves and blossoms. Choose containers that are light, non-porous and have good drainage.

  2. Transplant the begonias

    Begonias are often bought already potted at the nursery. Take care transplanting them into the containers of your choice, as the leaves and stems are fragile and break easily. Fill the container about two-thirds full of soilless potting mix, which provides good drainage and is free of pests and diseases. Avoid using garden soil, which is heavy and full of potential adversaries. Arrange the begonias in the container, and add another inch of soil. Top the soil with mulch to help hold the moisture.

  3. Water and fertilize the begonias

    Before watering the begonias, check if the soil is moist by sticking your finger in it. If it is still moist, do not water it. Use a bulb fertilizer or a time-release fertilizer about once a month, especially during the growing season.

  4. Avoid the frost

    Begonias cannot handle frost. Many people plant them as annuals and begin again the following year. However, if you want to preserve your hanging begonias, bring them indoors before the first frost.

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