The shine of an emerald in your houseplants collection - imperial begonia

The shine of an emerald in your houseplants collection - imperial begonia

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Imperial begonia (Smaragdova) is a perennial plant native to the tropics. It stands out for its excellent flowering and attractive leaves. The tropical beauty feels great in indoor conditions and is a wonderful interior decoration. In summer, the plant can be used as landscaping for a garden or veranda.

Despite the unpretentiousness of the plant, some conditions of detention still exist. This article contains information on proper care and breeding methods for imperial begonia at home.

Botanical description and history of discovery

Imperial begonia is a decorative leafy species. More than 900 species grow in the tropical forests of Asia, Africa and South America. For the first time, this new plant was discovered during a trip to the places of the island of Haiti by the French priest S. Plushier. In honor of the governor of this island, Michel Begon, the flower was named. The imperial begonia has a delightful appearance.

Its emerald green leaves, thanks to which the flower is also called emerald, are heart-shaped. Their length is 10-12 cm. The surface is covered with papillae, which give the leaf plate roughness and tuberosity. The flowers have a whitish tint and reach a diameter of 0.3-0.5 cm.At the top, they are collected in inflorescences by tassels up to 18 cm high.


This plant belongs to a perennial herbaceous decorative leafy species. The flowering period is January-April. Two varieties of imperial begonias have gained fame. One of them, Iron Cross, is a plant with a height of 50-55 cm. It has a creeping stem on which bright green leaves are located, the length of which reaches 15-18 cm. Wide stripes of brown are observed along their main veins. Another variety of imperial begonia is called Grus en Erfurt. The color of its leaves is different - from emerald green to marsh. Wide cream-colored stripes diverge along the main veins. A feature of imperial begonias is that there are male and female flowers on the pedicels. In females, a seed capsule with three edges is formed above the petals.

For the unique beauty and variety of flowers, begonia deservedly occupies one of the leading places in the floriculture market. On our site there is a lot of information about this wonderful plant. You can read about these types of begonias: Metallic, Royal (Rex), Griffith, Griffin, Hogweed.

Where and how to plant?

Imperial (emerald) begonia is mainly grown as a houseplant. In favorable weather, it can be planted in open ground, but in this case, the flower should be planted in loose soil saturated with nutrients.

Important! In order to grow an imperial begonia, it is necessary to organize good lighting. The flower will not lose its charm if it is transplanted 1 time in 2 years.

Lighting and location

The plant loves light, but it cannot be exposed to direct sunlight. Florists are advised to put a flower pot on a windowsill, the windows of which face east or west.

The "empress" grown at home requires constancy, so for her you need to choose one place where she will stand all the time. Begonias need space, so this must be taken into account when choosing a place for it.

To increase the air humidity, turn the pallet over and insert it into a larger pallet, and place a flower pot on top. Expanded clay is poured around the inserted one, which needs to be wetted. It is required to keep it moist. Also, to create optimal moisture, the flower pot can be placed in wet peat.

The plant needs to be regularly ventilated, but it is afraid of drafts, very low and high temperatures. If you do not comply with all the necessary conditions, begonia will wilt, shedding leaves and flowers.

Soil requirements

After a pot is selected for planting a plant, it is necessary to take a small ceramic, earth is poured into it. You can purchase a ready-made mixture at a specialty store or prepare it yourself. To do this, you need to mix 2 parts of leafy earth and 1 part each:

  • sand;
  • turf or humus;
  • high-moor peat.

You can add a little coniferous soil and river sand. The acidity of the soil should be 5.5-6.5 pH.

How to take care of it properly?

The plant feels great at any time of the year at an air temperature of 18 degrees, although in summer it tolerates a slight increase. Begonia loves fresh air.

The flower needs systematic moderate watering. Its roots are negatively affected by both lack of moisture and excess. The plant needs to be watered when the soil surface is completely dry. For irrigation, warm, settled water is taken. Imperial begonia belongs to a tropical plant species, therefore it needs high humidity., which must be at least 60%. Do not splash, however, as brown spots may form on the leaves.

Attention! In winter, imperial begonia should be kept away from the window. Cold air has a destructive effect on the flower.

Imperial begonia responds well to a spring transplant. The pot by this time becomes a small flower. This leads to the fact that it loses its decorative effect, the leaves become dull. After transplanting, the plant needs to be cut. As a result, it will branch out. The cut off top can be rooted.

Common diseases and pests

There are diseases that can cause imperial begonia. One of them is powdery mildew. In this case, the leaves are covered with rounded spots with a white bloom, a brown color is visible under it. Gradually, they become larger and diverge throughout the plate. The causes of this ailment are low humidity and high air temperatures.

With gray rot, the leaves of imperial begonia become sticky, watery spots with a gray bloom form on them. The stem and leaves gradually rot. Gray rot can appear due to:

  1. excessive watering;
  2. high air temperature;
  3. high humidity.

There is also such a disease as vascular bacteriosis, which affects the vessels of the plant, which turn black. As for the leaves, they begin to wither at the edges, then turn yellow and turn brown.

Another disease is the leaf nematode, which infects the plant through the soil. In this case, the edges of the leaves lose their elasticity and dry out. Then yellow and brown spots appear on it. It happens that begonias do not like the conditions of detention, then the edges of its leaves will dry out, later they will fly around and the trunk will become naked.

A flower can also suffer from pests, which include:

  • greenhouse aphid;
  • the scale is soft;
  • greenhouse trypsis;
  • mealybug;
  • greenhouse whitefly;
  • rootworm nematode.

Breeding features

Imperial begonia is most often propagated by stem cuttings. However, it multiplies easily:

  • dividing the bushes;
  • parts of the sheet;
  • seeds.

For its propagation by cuttings, a stalk is taken, which is divided into parts 3 cm long. They are thoroughly pressed into the soil, which it is desirable to heat from below. This will help the scion take root faster.

The method of propagation of begonias with imperial roots consists in carefully dividing the root system into several parts, which are planted in prepared loose soil.

In order to propagate a plant using a leaf, you need to:

  1. Divide into triangles with a knife. It must be remembered that when dividing the vein must be at the top of the leaflet.
  2. Then they are laid out on the ground and pressed tightly.
  3. Be sure to cover with foil. Leaflets need daily ventilation.
  4. The emergence of shoots should be expected for about a month.
  5. After the shoots get stronger, they need to be planted in separate pots.

Imperial begonia belongs to unpretentious plants. She doesn't need much care. Today there are many varieties and sizes of this beautiful plant.

We offer for viewing a video lesson on the propagation of begonia with a leaf:

Watch the video: How To Treat Rare House Plants for Leaf Blight! The Bacteria That Murdered My Rare House Plants! (February 2023).