Rieger begonias are beautiful winter-blooming flowers that bring brightness to the darkest of winters.
These flowers are also known as Begonia x hiemalis.
They are flowering plants that come out in an array of beautiful colors, yellows, reds, whites and oranges.
These plants are often sold as disposable, however they don’t have to be.
Many people opt to buy new ones after a single season of flowering, but it is possible to keep them growing all year round so that they can bloom again.
This can be done through propagation or a rest period.
So, if you want colorful flowers throughout the winter, a rieger begonia is definitely for you!
All it needs is a sunny windowsill and some simple care, and you’ll have brightened up those long, winter months.
Read on for all you need to know about rieger begonia care.
How To Care For Rieger Begonia Plants?
These plants are fairly easy to take care of when you know what they need.
If you can optimize these conditions, you will prolong the length of time that these beautiful plants will flower for.
Watering Your Rieger Begonia Indoors
Watering this plant is fairly straightforward.
You should allow the soil of the plant to dry to around 1 inch in depth (2.5cm) before you water again.
This can be tested by poking your finger into the soil 1 inch to check if it is dry.
This should be about up to your first knuckle (depending on how big or small your hands are!).
If the soil is dry, you should give the plant a thorough soaking.
If the soil still feels moist, don’t water the plant as it is quite sensitive to being overwatered.
Tips When Watering
- Pour the water directly onto the soil to avoid getting the plant itself wet. This is because this can cause fungal diseases if the water gets onto the foliage.
These plants need average humidity levels.
Sometimes this is difficult to produce in the winter months when humidity levels can be quite low.
In order to give the plant the required level of humidity, keep the plant on a tray.
Fill this tray with some water and some pebbles to boost the moisture levels in the air surrounding the plant.
While misting is a good way to boost humidity levels for many plants, this is not advised for the rieger begonia.
This is because if the plant gets water on its foliage it may suffer from a fungal disease.
A humidifier will also work to get the humidity levels suitable for your plant.
It is recommended that you give your rieger begonia plant fertilizer about once every three weeks.
This is given to your houseplant by adding the fertilizer diluted to half of its strength.
Any houseplant fertilizer will work well for these indoor plants.
High-phosphorus fertilizer is a good one to opt for as it promotes the growth of flowers and will help to maintain the brightly colored blooms for a longer period of time.
Ideal Conditions For Your Rieger Begonia Indoors
The rieger begonia indoor plant thrives best in temperatures of between 60 and 75 degrees fahrenheit.
This is about 16 to 24 degrees celsius. At night, this plant prefers to be at the lower end of this temperature range.
This plant is very hardy when it comes to temperature, but if you let the temperature surrounding the plant fall lower than 55 degrees fahrenheit (or 12 degrees celsius), then the plant may experience damage that will be difficult to rectify.
When you are choosing your potting soil for your rieger begonia, it is important to remember that this plant requires easy and fast draining.
Opt for an indoor potting mix that has been specifically designed for indoor flowering plants.
If your plant’s roots are starting to burst out of the pot, you should consider repotting your plant.
If you do this, choose a container that is 2 inches bigger than the one your plant is currently in.
This plant requires medium levels of light. It will grow best when it is placed in filtered sunlight.
For instance, the plant does best when it is placed on an east-facing windowsill. These conditions are usually bright and cool.
If you are experiencing a particularly sunny winter, some sheer curtains might help to filter out the light effectively.
These plants are bred to do well in the winter, so they are used to having short days or sunlight and long, dark nights.
For this reason, it is important to keep them away from any artificial light in the evenings, such as street lights.
This is advised because the plants bloom best when they are getting the extended periods of darkness that they require.
How To Propagate A Rieger Begonia Indoors?
If you want to keep your plant alive for another year, then you will need to propagate the plant to start a new plant.
If you wish to do this, follow the instructions below:
- When your plants have finished blooming, which usually happens in late spring to early summer, you should stop watering your plants so that the soil dries out.
- Cut back your plants to around 3 inches and leave the plants to rest for a month to six weeks in a cool location.
- Once you have left your plants for six week, you should begin watering them again.
- After this, new stems should begin to grow. When this happens, you should wait until they reach 3 inches. When this happens, you should cut them off and plant them in a different pot.
- You should then throw away the plant that has already flowered.
When you cut off the stem, you should root the cutting to ensure that it starts to grow again.
When you do this, you should remove all the leaves on the bottom part of your cutting and then dip it into a rooting hormone powder.
You should then put the cutting into a seed starting soil mix and cover it with plastic.
If you keep the soil moist, it should take. When it has taken to the soil, you should transfer the cutting into regular soil.
How To Ensure Rieger Begonia Continues Blooming?
It is likely that if you like Rieger Begonia indoor plants, that you want them to bloom throughout the entire winter and for as long as possible.
If you want to keep your plant blooming for as long as possible, follow these steps:
- When your plant has finished blooming, make sure you cut the stems back to 3 inches.
- You should then place your plant outdoors in a very cool area during the summer. Don’t overwater your plants.
- When your plant starts to grow, you should take your plant back indoors.
- Start caring for your plant in the way you originally looked after it.
- Your plant should start blooming again as the winter comes.
What Issues Are Common With Rieger Begonia?
There are a few issues that Rieger Begonia commonly experience, and there are very easy ways to rectify these issues.
Read on for more information!
Often, your rieger begonia flowers begin to turn brown.
This is quite common and it more often than not indicates that your flower is coming to the end of its life cycle.
While the plant will hopefully bloom for around 6 months, each individual flower may not last as long.
If this happens, cut off the dead flowers to make room for new blooms.
However, if you feel like your blooms are turning brown too soon, you should consider whether you are taking proper care of your plant.
If you suspect this, follow the care instructions above.
If you find that the leaves of your plant are turning brown, then you may not have to take any action.
When your leaves turn brown, this may be because the plant is preparing for its dormant period.
During this time, the plant has a long rest and the leaves don’t need to be brown. This is nothing to worry about.
However, if browning occurs outside of this dormant period, it could be due to a variety of different things.
- Under-watering. If the plant is not getting enough water then the leaves may turn brown. If this occurs, make sure that you are giving the plant enough water when the top 1 inch of soil is dry.
- Humidity. If the humidity levels are not correct for the plant, then the health of the plant may suffer. If this occurs, increase or decrease humidity levels so they are at a moderate level.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
Where Can I Buy Rieger Begonia?
You can purchase this plant in any garden center or plant store.
You can also purchase them online and have them delivered to your home.
It is a good idea to propagate these plants every year so that you don’t have to continue buying new ones.
What Colors Can I Get?
Rieger Begonia plants come in lots of bright and beautiful colors.
For instance, you can get these plants in pink, yellow, red and white, as well as many other colors.
These flowers bloom throughout the winter and bring these bright spring and summer colors into the winter and autumn months.
These plants can grow to be around 12 to 18 inches tall and wide if they are put in the correct containers.
Can Rieger Begonias Be Grown Outdoors As Well?
Yes. Rieger begonias can be grown outdoors during the summer months.
However, they are often grown indoors as houseplants that flower during the winter months, bringing light to the darkness!
If you allow your plants to have a resting period during the summer months, it will bloom again during the early winter of the following year.
Do Rieger Begonia Need Much Sun?
These plants survive best in medium light, which you will be able to provide for your plant by placing them on an east-facing windowsill.
In this position, they will be able to get the correct amount of light.
It is also a good idea to place the plant in front of sheer curtains so that the sunlight is filtered through, rather than just being completely direct.
This plant will not bloom if it is exposed to more light than is natural during the winter.
Because of this, you should avoid placing the sun in any artificial light, such as light from streetlights.
How Long Can Rieger Begonia Live?
These plants live on an annual cycle, flowering each winter and lying dormant during the summer.
While many people believe that these plants are disposable, there is a great way to keep them going year after year that has been explored above.
As long as the plant is able to have a rest period, then this is quite easy to ensure.
When the flowering has finished, you should move the plant to a cooler location to let the soil dry out, before moving them outside for a few weeks.
Once you have done this, you should resume regular care.
Caring for rieger begonia plants is not very difficult when you know how.
The plants are very hardy and, as winter bloomers, do not require very specific conditions.
You can propagate these plants so they don’t need to be disposed of every year.
These flowers bring joy and brightness to so many people’s dark and dreary winters.
If you enjoyed this article, you might like our post on ‘Plant Profile And Care Guide For The Pothos N Joy‘.
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