The Q&A Archives: Can I get wax begonias from seed?

Question: We love wax begonias and have tried unsuccessfully to grow them from seed. What's the secret? Felix Bernardo Fairmont, WV

Answer: They need light to germinate, says Ken Frieling, co owner of Glasshouse Works, growers of more than 200 varieties of begonias in Stewart, Ohio. Here's what he suggests: Fill a terrarium or polystyrene cooler with moistened sphagnum peat moss. Sprinkle the begonia seeds on top of the peat moss, but don't cover them. Place the container in light shade at 60_F and water carefully around the edges of the peat moss, just enough to moisten it. The seeds usually germinate within a week. When the seedlings reach the three to five leaf stage, transplant the delicate leaved plants into two inch diameter pots and apply a commercial balanced fertilizer such as 10 10 10. Place them in direct light at 60oF to 70oF.

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