Propagating Begonia Rex
Have you ever wondered if it’s possible to try propagating you Begonia rex (painted-leaf begonia)? Well, if you have a lush and healthy plant that can spare a leaf or two, try these two interesting ways where the veins of a single leaf can soon result in new rooted plantlets.
For propagating begonia rex you need
- A clean seedling tray
- A disinfected cutting tool like a sharp penknife or craft knife
- A soilless rooting medium of palm peat and vermiculite or perlite
- A clear plastic bag
- Some paper clips
- Make your soilless medium by mixing palm peat (which has been saturated with water in a bucket) with an equal amount of vermiculite or perlite. Then fill up the tray with this medium, which should be moist.
- Remove a young healthy leaf and trim off the leaf stem.
TIP: You can also cut a few squares about the size of a postage stamp from a healthy leaf. Each square should include a strong piece of vein.
- With the underside facing you, use your knife to make incisions across the strongest veins of the leaf. They need to be at least 1cm apart.
- Press the leaf (or squares) onto the rooting medium, cut side down.
- Secure it with paper clips bent to resemble hair pins.
- Place the tray in a clear plastic bag in a light place, but out of direct sunlight. Inflate the bag so that it does not touch the leaves, punch a few small holes in it and seal it.
- As soon as clumps of plantlets develop from the cut veins, carefully lift and separate them, retaining a little of the medium around the roots of each one. Pot them up into small pots filled with potting soil.