Plant-o-Pedia: Begonia Corallina

Begonia Corallina 1

Photo by Alec Perez

Introducing Queen Bey-gonia, our polka dot pattern loving, high humidity thriving, and currently blooming queen! I’m obsessed with her silver pops of color and leaf pattern looking like Mother Nature bedazzled her herself!

Featured here is a Begonia corallina, native to South America, this species falls the umbrella term "Angel Wing Begonia" a.k.a the part of the family that has polka dot or circle like leaf patterns with red undersides that can grow up to 6' tall! Basically, the Louboutins of the begonia family. This easy-to-care-for plantie is a great addition to any plant collection and will add pops of color and pattern to any home.

Begonia Corallina 3

Photo by Alec Perez

GET THE GREEN: Begonia is a flowering plant family of over 1,800 different species! With so many varieties, begonias shapes vary from wing-like to spiraling circles to star-shaped with bold leaf colors all over the spectrum! Begonias are easily found in most garden centers as many species are great for landscaping as they can do well outside in partial shade.

WATER: Water your plantie weekly during the growing season and pull back during the winter. Let the soil dry out a little bit between waterings and be mindful to not overwater as that will lead to root rot.

SOIL: Regular houseplant soil with lots of perlite will keep your begonia happy. Since you’ll be watering this plant regularly you’ll want to mix in a lot of perlite to make sure the soil is airing out and not retaining water for too long. This plantie enjoys a little air in its roots so don’t pack the soil too tightly when repotting in the spring.

FERTILIZER: Use a balanced fertilizer once every 2 weeks during the growing season. A general rule of thumb is to dilute the recommended serving size by half to prevent over-fertilizing and burning your plant.

HUMIDITY: This plantie will appreciate high humidity so place her in a well-lit bathroom so she can take in the post-shower humidity, hanging out with other high humidity loving fronds next to a humidifier, or solo on a pebble tray. If you notice the edges of the leaves getting crispy or turning brown then this is a sign to bump up the humidity.

SUNLIGHT: This particular species of begonia would prefer bright indirect light in a western facing window. If you have south-facing windows be mindful to place your begonia back a few feet or filter the light with a sheer curtain as direct sunlight will cause the plant to burn.

PLACEMENT: I place Bey-gonia among my other high humidity loving plants in a west-facing window next to a humidifier to keep her thriving. Her beautiful leaf pattern and reddish under leaf help her stand out among her bandmates.

Begonia Corallina 3

Photo by Alec Perez

PROPAGATION: It’s easy to propagate this plantie through cuttings. Bey-gonia is a cutting I received from my mom and her “Mother Tina” begonia plant! On the stem locate a node and cut the stem. Remove the couple leaves at the end of the stem and then place in water! This will encourage the plant to branch where you placed your cut so be mindful to place a cut where the plant can support the weight.

EXTRA CREDIT: If you’re up for discovering a new plant family, I would encourage looking more into begonias as they have so much variety, color, and character! A fun starting point would be the indoor favorite Begonia rex with its spiraling leaf shape or, if you’re looking for an outdoor addition, start with the tuberous begonia varieties!

CAUTION: Begonias are toxic, please be mindful with your four-legged friends as their tubers can cause some sickness.

GET THE LOOK: Bey-gonia is potted in a matte cream Kaya Shorty, Chaya Wallpaper in Amethyst by Justina Blakeney, and Brass Egret Wall Hanging Set.


1 Response

  • Elizabeth

    What a beautiful plant! Love the white spots!

    On September 14, 2020

    Reply


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