'Fern begonia (B. foliosa)

woebegoniaJanuary 14, 2014

This little begonia is fun to pinch and shape, and I think would be easy for new begonia growers. Each tiny leaf will root and make a new plant, if you have the patience.

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Looks good Joan. Never had any luck with this one when winter rolled around. HD Landscape Center sold these in quart size for $2.50 (when they were in business a few years ago). I think I bought 3 or 4 and lost them all when I moved them inside for winter. I'm surprised yours is not in a terrarium.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2014 at 4:07PM
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I am a little surprised myself. Our small living room is not used much this time of year; however, B. 'Orange Rubra' and B. 'Red Compta' are there year round at north and west windows whcih are not fitted to a fireplace well, so there is a slight draft to balance the heat which is kept at 60 degrees. Usually would have plants like folisa, 'GiGi' and heracleifolia moved into winter quarters by now, but the fact that the temps this week have been in the 40's makes that area more likea Spring growing area, than a winter- heated area as it usually is. B.partita, of all things, is sitting around the house too, growing well, I keep reminding myself it should be moved one of these days while it is looking good. I hav e been wondering how John in DC came out, a good snow covering might have been helpful to his plants. (should have said we don't use the fireplace anymore,, and it is the outdoor temps in the 40's).

    Bookmark   January 16, 2014 at 8:39AM
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I am in a different situation where 99% of my begonias and other houseplants spend the winter in the basement. If it is warm outdoors then it can be very warm in the basement with all the lights and the plants transpiration make it very humid so I often turn the AC on to make it comfortable for me to water, etc. If it is cold outside it is usually comfortable downstairs where the AC is not coming on and the heat cycle has not been turned on (yet the furnace for the main floor is often cycling on and off). Yet when it is very cold like it was a week ago I had to turn on the basement heat and that just seems to suck all the humidity out plus keep it nice and warm. I can water today and tomorrow many plants will need watering again. Seems as there is no perfect solution. I keep very few plants in terrariums but when this kind of weather happens (every year) I often pull out plastic containers and put over small weak plants to keep the humidity in. Makes a huge difference.

John may check in again one of these days. He often posts stuff but never answers anyone. Hope he has some pleasant surprises but this bitter cold may take its toll.

I leave dahlias and callas in the ground but I may be in for a surprise myself. I will be surprised if they come back.

    Bookmark   January 16, 2014 at 9:12AM
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By summer, Butch, most of my plants are outside, so the basement, family room really, is pleasantly cool. If they ever pass cap and trade I think we will be glad to have a place which won't run up the electric bill. My husband had two fish tanks there for 25 years, and a lot of other things have gravitated there over the years, there's half a bath there and a drain in the storage area. Upstairs I have cellular shades in a room we don't heat so the canes there don't get fried, works pretty well but when it is below zero outside you can feel the cold at the base of the shades trying to get in, it reminds me of some old horror movie.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2014 at 9:05AM
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I just lost everything I typed in and don't know how it happened? Oh well...

I like gardening outdoors because watering chores are a lot easier with a hose than a watering container. Also get all that free heat, light, and humidity. May not be as nice for people but plants seem to love it.

Talking about going back to Thailand this summer and I would hate to think about doing that in winter - trying to find someone to water daily by hand would be a faith of leap. No way I could leave for two weeks in winter.

We do have some cool spots in the basement but nothing freezing. Mostly around the double door in the small utility room and then the fresh air intake in the big utility room.

I only let in a few plants indoors (terrariums mostly) for summer and try to locate them in a central spot to keep lights to a minimum.

I had to change my sump pump out a couple of weeks ago. Without it, it is hard to use the commode or even fill water containers (overfill). It is so nice to have a full bath in the basement, beats running upstairs to use a bathroom, I fill my water containers in the shower, and give the dogs an occasional bath there as well. I wish the sink was a lot larger for cleaning pots, plastic-ware but it works for me nonetheless.

My fear is losing power for a few hours during a real cold spell. A lot of homes had frozen water pipes during our recent cold snap (5 degrees which is a rarity here). We can run the gas fireplace but it won't heat the basement or power the lights.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2014 at 1:41PM
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