I have ordered some Begonia tubers but have since discovered that they need a temperature in the mid 60s until they start to sprout leaves.
As I can not achieve this-would it be ok to start them off in my airing cupboard-obviously with no daylight?
You could try that. I am getting fed up with mine. I started them in a heated propagator on February 1st after advice from Mr Tichmarsh. The ones I saved myself have slowly sprouted, but the six large ones I bought in January are a no show.
I need the propagator now for seeds so they will all have to come out and take their chances. Maybe the warmer weather will bring them on naturally and they will be ready for the baskets and tubs in time. Good luck.
I have never used a propagator, the corms need to be dry on the tops or they will rot.
I am just laying mine in a seed trays now, in the kitchen, some have sprouted already. Just sink to half the depth of the corn into the compost. Don’t cover, they will come if the corms were good and firm in the first place. Water around the edges, not directly on the corm.
People used to grow begonias before propagators were available to the amateur grower ... the 'old chaps' I knew who grew begonias did just as Lyn has described above. It worked for them
We have been growing them for more than 30 years, a few of them are the same ones. Cut in half, although I have gone off of the big blousy types.
A propagator here would be no good.
People don’t seem to want to these days it seems, nature will provide, heat, and light.
Bumping up for Des
I gave up with them until last year. They flowered far too late. My father was an 'old chap' and I remember him saying "i'm not growing something that disnae appear till after the Glasgow Fair".
My prize gardener neighbour does grow them, but he starts them off around now in a heated greenhouse that lights up like a blue UFO.
I do take your points about growing without heat and it would be my preferred method, but it doesn't always work in time for the short Summer that we have here.