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Cane Begonia

I hope it’s okay to ask about houseplants rather than garden plants here. I was given this plant in the spring (see first 2 pics) and cut it back as it had just one stem (cane) and leaves mostly near the top. I used some of the cut off material to grow a new plant (see 3rd pic). I’m pleased that the original has got a lot more leaves now but was hoping I could stimulate it to throw out some more canes as it still looks a bit spindly/top heavy for such a large pot to my mind.  BTW, the 2nd pic shows what I assume is a dead cane that has been used for support. Does anyone have any ideas as to how I can get more canes to grow from the original or how to stimulate leaves to grow nearer the base? Thanks in advance of your replies. :-)


  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,699
    Debbiehowever, I can't see the photographs. Did you click on the mountain picture icon and follow the instructions?

    Your Begonias sound like they need pruning down. By not cutting down, the growth becomes lanky and spindly. In order for more canes, you really need to be brutal and cut the stems right down. That way, they encourage new canes. Same with the leaves. To have more leaves, continue to shorten them even when they are growing from spring into summer. I recommend you do that now or wait till next year.
  • Oops! Here’s the photos. 
  • Unfortunately, they’ve displayed in the wrong order but hopefully the meaning is still clear.  :)
  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,699
    Thanks for sending photos. They are looking lovely and will get big. My mum used to grow them on a north west aspect slightly away from the window and it just got so big, she was giving away cuttings all the time.

    You really need to repot the original into a larger size pot because they need room to grow bushier and tall. Cut them down to at least the second join where the first leaf is at the bottom. Yes, you will lose a lot of the top growth, but you have no more other canes. Once you have done that, hopefully more canes will grow from below. Then, from there, continue to cut as they grow through the warmer months. This helps them whilst they are shorter to create more branching.  I suggest you do that next year if you cut the main cane down this year. 
  • Hi
    just seen your latest reply but I’d already got hold of the scissors!!! Anyway, I’ve been brutal and this is the result. Fingers crossed.  :):)
  • I’m hoping that if it doesn’t stimulate more canes, I’ll at least get leaves on the other side to balance it out more. The upside of cutting it down is that I now have some lovely foliage in a vase. 
  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,699
    Debbiehowever, thanks for posting another photo. Don't forget to re-pot soon. Your pot will be too small very soon. In future, if the canes are quite thick, just use a knife to cut off. You get a better clean cut. You may even find they may develop roots when left in water. There are plenty of cutting material to make more young plants too. Good luck with it all.
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