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3 Best Methods How to Propagate Begonia maculata

3 Best Methods How to Propagate Begonia maculata

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In this article, I am going to discuss different methods how to propagate Begonia maculata.

Begonia maculata, aka the Polka Dot Begonia, is famous for its polka dot leaves according to RHS. It is a colorful member of the Begonia genus and the Begoniaceae family.

Begonia maculata Care Takeaways

Species Begonia maculata var. wightii
Synonyms Polka Dot Begonia, Polka Dot Plant, Angel Wing Begonia, Begonia maculata wightii, Trout begonia, Clown Begonia
Family Begoniaceae
Genus Begonia
Growth Bushy growth
Height 2 feet
Width 0.3 feet
Soil Well-draining sand, clay, and loamy soil
Watering Water every 5 to 7 days
Light Bright indirect
Temperature 65 to 86°F
Humidity 60-80%
Fertilizer Fertilize 2 times per month
Propagation Stem cuttings, seeds
Toxicity Toxic to pets such as cats and dogs as it contains soluble calcium oxalates. Ingestion can cause irritation and vomiting.

How to Propagate Begonia Maculata

A Begonia Maculata can be propagated from a stem cutting, a tip cutting, a rhizome, a leaf, or from seed. An easy way to propagate is to use a clean pruning shear, take a cutting and place the stem- or leaf cutting in a jar of room-temperature water. Once the stem cutting grows roots, transfer it to a pot.

How to Propagate Begonia maculata
How to Propagate Begonia maculata

Begonia maculata Propagation Video

Begonia maculata Propagation Video

Different Methods How to Propagate Begonia maculata

Propagating Begonia maculata in Water

Step 1: Sterilize your Tools

Before moving on to any further step of propagating a plant, you always need to make sure that all your gardening tools are properly cleaned and sterilized.

Make sure to use sharp and sterilized garden tools to ensure that your Begonia Maculata thrives
Make sure to use sharp and sterilized garden tools to ensure that your Begonia Maculata thrives

If not, your plant may wilt or show discoloration of leaves over time.

Cleaning and sterilizing your scissors, knives, and other gardening accessories may seem unnecessary and cumbersome, but believe me, it is one of the best things you could do to give your plant a long and healthy life. 

Step 2: Take a Stem Cutting

For you to use water as a medium for propagating Begonia Maculata, you can use a stem or leaf cutting of a Begonia maculata.

Cut one of the stems at an angle using clean, sharpened scissors. Otherwise, you can also use pruned cuttings if you have them.

Use a clean and sharpened pair of scissors to take a plant cutting from your Begonia Maculata
Use a clean and sharpened pair of scissors to take a plant cutting from your Begonia Maculata

It is certainly not recommended to cut your stems unnecessarily. 

It’s vital to ensure that you have at least one small node branching from your stem. Or else, one or two small leaves will also do great for your propagation. 

With this particular plant, it is not necessary that you cut below the node.

You can cut the stem anywhere you like, keeping in mind that you have a reasonable height of branch that you can use for propagating. 

While cutting below the node is always the best idea because leaves usually cluster around the nodes; leaves grow almost everywhere in this plant.

Therefore, you do not have to be very worried about cutting the stem precisely below the nodes.

Step 3: Place the Cutting in a Jar

Once you have the pruned or the deliberate stem cutting, the next step is to fill a large jar with water.

You do not want to use extremely cold or extremely hot water as both of these will delay and ultimately stunt the growth of this newly propagating plant.

Use room temperature water for best results.

Put the jar in a room with bright yet indirect light. Make sure that the small leaves that are attached to your stem cutting are not immersed in water.

If they keep falling back into the water, you can use two long sticks to keep the leaves above the water’s surface.

It’s strongly advised to change the water every four days to prevent dirt and bacterial growth. 

Step 4: Transfer your Cuttings to a Pot

Slowly and gradually, you will see new roots sprouting from your stem, cutting within a few weeks. Wait until these roots are 2-3 inches long.

If you take the cutting out of water too soon, your plant will never grow at its optimum level in its new pot.

Once the roots are at least three inches long, you can carefully take out the cutting and place it in a moderately sized pot with a rich potting mix.

Check out the best soil for Begonias for you to ensure that your Begonia Maculata thrives after you plant it.

Step 5: Give Time to Your Plant

It is critical that your plant has the space and strength in its new pot.

Ensure that you water your Begonia Maculata on time, keep it in indirect bright light, and clean the fresh leaves so that the plant is not prone to infection.

Keep experimenting with the location of the plant until you find the sweet spot where your plant shows optimal signs of growth. 

Propagating Begonia maculata in Potting Mix

Step 1: Take a Stem Cutting

Using the same technique as above, cut the stem using a clean pair of scissors or use a pruned cutting so that you do not have to waste any more of your branches.

Step 2: Place your Cutting in a Rich Potting Mix

Unlike the first method in which you placed your cutting in a jar full of room temperature water, use a rich and moistened potting mix this time. 

Afterward, put the plant pot in a location where it gets plenty of indirect light and gives it an abundance of time to grow and sprout new roots.

Then, wait for a few more weeks before fresh leaves from the stem rise above the soil. 

Make sure the potting mix that you are using for your new plant is rich in organic matter so that it has all the essential nutrients it needs to grow. 

Step 3: Ensure Proper Humidity

To ensure the right levels of humidity for your plant, you can use many techniques.

One of them is simply buying an inexpensive humidifier in which you can set the desired level of moisture for your plant.

Ensure your Begonia Maculata grows healthily by increasing the humidity levels by using a humidifier
Ensure your Begonia maculata grows healthily by increasing the humidity levels by using a humidifier

If you are not willing to accept a humidifier, you can cover your plant with a clear plastic bag and seal it slightly over the edges to keep humidity intact.

You can always remove the cover every once in a while, to let your plant breathe properly and ensure the optimum airflow.

Step 4: Do a Resistance Check

After a few weeks, it is now time to check if your newly built leaves and stems have built resistance in them.

This will be a test to check if they have appropriately grown or if their growth is still stunted. Tug the stem in your direction. 

If you feel that the branch is showing resistance and pulling itself towards the soil, this is an indicator that the plant has built deep roots inside the ground and is now fully intact. 

Start treating your cutting like a typical plant once its root system’s developed.

Propagating Begonia Maculata from Seeds

Step 1: Bury the Seeds under the Soil

Another way of propagating Begonia Maculata or Polka dot Begonia is by simply using seeds bought from a supermarket.

While the quality of the seeds may not always be the best, it is highly recommended not to compromise on the quality of your potting mix for your plant.

Step 2: Water the Plant Regularly

Since your seeds will directly be put in this potting mix, the mixture should have a good amount of nutrients to grow efficiently.

Two of the essential minerals to look for in a potting mix are phosphorus and magnesium.

Spread the seeds evenly on your potting mixture before covering them with another generous layer of potting mix. 

Keep watering the plant regularly and keep the pot in indirect light indoors for the first few days before moving them outside, if you wish to do so.

After three weeks of regular watering and ensuring the proper sunlight, you should see small stems rising upward. 

Frequently Asked Questions About How to Propagate Begonia Maculata

Can I give direct light to my Begonia maculata?

Begonia maculata thrives in bright but indirect light. If it is exposed to direct sunlight for an extended period of time, it will eventually burn the leaves and result in discoloration.

Is it a good idea to propagate Begonia maculata through seeds?

Begonia maculata thrives in bright but indirect light. If it is exposed to direct sunlight for an extended period of time, it will eventually burn the leaves and result in discoloration.

Can you propagate Begonia maculata from a leaf?

You can propagate Begonia maculata from a leaf. It can be propagated from seeds, stem cuttings, and leaf cuttings.

Conclusion About How to Propagate Begonia Maculata

 Begonia maculata can be propagated from a:

  • Stem cutting
  • Tip cutting
  • Leaf-cutting
  • Rhizome
  • From seed

To propagate Begonia maculata:

1. Cut off a part of the stem or a leaf and place it in water

2. Exchange the water every few days

3. After 3-4 weeks roots will start to grow

4. Transfer the rooted cutting to potting medium and water it slightly

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