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Begonia Maculata

Begonia Maculata

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Begonia maculata, or Polka Dot begonia as it’s often called, is a splashy show-stopper that looks fantastic with it’s olive green leaves and contrasting spots. It’s a houseplant that is likely to turn heads in your home, and thankfully it isn’t too difficult to care for. Let’s get started with a quick summary of begonia maculata care.

Begonia Maculata Care

  • Scientific Name:  Begonia maculata
  • Common Name: Polka Dot Begonia, Spotted Begonia, Trout Begonia
  • Light Requirements: Bright, indirect light. Higher light levels will promote strong growth and blooms, but avoid direct sunlight.
  • Watering: Keep the soil generally moist, letting the top half inch of soil dry out between watering. Will not tolerate soggy soil.
  • Soil: A light houseplant potting mix is ideal. Add perlite if drainage is insufficient.
  • Temperature: 65°F (18°C) and 86°F (30°C).
  • Fertilizer: Balanced, water-soluble fertilizer applied every 2-4 weeks when the plant is actively growing. I use this one.
  • Humidity: High humidity is important. >45% ideally. A digital hygrometer can be useful to monitor humidity.
  • Flowering: Bloom from spring to fall, producing clusters of white flowers with cheery yellow centers on a single stem.
  • Pruning: Prune back at least twice per year to maintain compact growth.
  • Propagation: Stem cuttings are easily propagated in soil or water.
  • Re-Potting: Annual repotting in spring will help greatly.
  • Diseases and Pests: High humidity and overwatering can cause powdery mildew, botrytis, bacterial leaf spot, stem and root rot. Whitefly and mealybugs are sometimes a problem, but easily dealt with.
  • Toxicity: Toxic to pets and people if ingested.
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