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Begonias/ seeds and greenhouse problems -

I am  a First time greenhouse owner and the  begonias have  not sprouted except one - last year in house they sprouted ok so I presume it's the temperature unless they are not watered well enough. also seeds aren't germinating so it may just be down to how I am heating  the green house ???

 - I am worried re my electric bill especially when nothing is sprouting also how should I be watering - things seem to drying up  and i am frightened of over watering ? 

Posts

  • PerkiPerki Rossendale - LancashirePosts: 2,218

    Growing begonia from seed is quite alot of work and it best to have a good set up with grow lights etc. I giving up after this year bothering growing from seed, I have grow them from seed before but its not worth the hassle and the expense.  I started mine 1st January in a heated propagator I got them to germinate but they just have done much since still about 3mm high. I bought 1 pot from the GC for £2 which had already germinated and well on there way growing, after pricking them out I got 92 plants much better value for money, especially after buying the seeds / heating the propagator.

    begonia do require constant temperatures about 24 - 27C and like it humid and lots of light to have the best results otherwise germination can be erratic / poor .

    They may have dried out in the greenhouse it can get very hot even in spring sunshine, I water mine from the base in a tray waiting to see the top layer of compost damp and then remove from tray.

  • Thank you - I may confused you , the begonias are tubers . I had brought some into the house to see if that speeds the growth up

    It is other seeds like lobelia and petunia which are also slow  to  do anything in the greenhouse 

    thanks fo advice re keeping begonias moist - any other tips on greenhouse watering would be gratefully appreciated 

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 20,611

    I have only just set my begonia tubers, they are sprouting today. I would say you started them to early and it was just too cold. Give them time, now its warming up a bit they may shoot.

    I take it you only just layed them in a seed tray, with compost around the sides, not on the top? Dont let water get on the top of the tubers.

    Lobelia and petunias are slow, I always start seeds off in the kitchen then move out to the greenhouse when they grow on.

    I have never had heat in the greenhouse, if you dont want to overwinter tropical plants there is no need, and now, definitely no need for heat.

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • ButtercupdaysButtercupdays Posts: 4,128

    Invest in a heated propagator, the largest you can afford. Almost an essential for tiny seeds like begonias, it retains a moist atmosphere around them and is much cheaper than heating the greenhouse. I start mine in moist compost and mist gently every day, but they are very slow starters.

    I leave mine in there for months (always start in January if they are for the garden) and only prick out when they have made proper tiny plants, into small individual pots, and then put them back again till established. Good for lobelia and streptocarpus too. In fact it is so good for streptos that I now have a problem with where to put them as I had so many germinate!

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 20,611

    Have you begonia corms made a start yet Lynn.?

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Lynn8Lynn8 Posts: 12

    Talking of begonia corms - mine have been in compost now since beginning of March in an unheated greenhouse, but still no sign of life! At what point do I give up on them? I am planning my summer baskets around them so I need to have a rethink if they're not going to do anything.Most of my dahlias have shoots which went in pots the same time, and seeds are doing well so do the begonias need more heat?

  • LynLyn DevonPosts: 20,611

    That was a bit earlier, I only did mine just over a week ago, they have tiny buds now.Have you left the top of the corm uncovered and not too wet. Its warming up now, although not at nights, so they may make a start soon. 

    You could lift them and make sure they are not squaggy. (If they are, they are no good)  ,then just lay them on top of the compost again.

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Lynn8Lynn8 Posts: 12

    i thought I may have been a bit early, I had read differing times when I googled it! The top of the corn is very lightly covered but you can still see it, I'll take them out and have a feel to see if they've gone squidgy since I put them in. Thanks Lyn, all a learning curve for me this year! I'll probable give them a couple of more weeks then to see if anything happens!

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