B. masoniana

B. ningmingensis (dark form) | Photo: Linda P. Tamblyn

B. masoniana

B. ningmingensis var. bella | Photo: Steve’s Leaves

MEMBER NAME: In Search of Small Things

SPECIES NAME: Begonia ningmingensis

There are multiple forms of ningmingensis including a dark form, a form from Vietnam, and one called ‘Bella’. The info below will be for these three forms. Any differences in growing between the forms will be noted.

[1] SHADE, SEMI-SHADE, SUN, TERRARIUM, FLUORESCENT LIGHTS

I have grown this species only in terrarium conditions, under LED lights of 1800 lumens. Humidity is near 100% and ventilation is a small vent allowing for passive air exchange.

[2] TYPE OF GROWING MEDIUM USED

Happy Frog potting soil with about 1/3 perlite and 10% coco fiber, 10% turface. Lots of turface and perlite to top the soil.

[3] TYPE OF FERTILIZER AND FREQUENCY OF FEEDING

1/8-1/4 urea free orchid fertilizer applied once a month.

[4] MOISTURE REQUIREMENTS AND METHOD OF SUPPLYING APPROPRIATE AMOUNT OF WATER

All forms like to dry out between waterings. The dark form is very tolerant of water on its leaves, and of growing in rather stagnant, sodden conditions, and will happily grow and flower. The bella form and the Vietnam form are much less tolerant of water on their leaves and of sodden conditions, rotting easily if they are kept constantly wet.

[5] PEST PROBLEMS AND HOW YOU TREATED THESE

None thus far.

[6] NOTE YOUR EXPERIENCE OF SETTING SEEDS AND GROWING SEEDS OF YOUR SPECIES

Just recently hand-pollinated and am waiting for the seed capsule to dry on the plant.

[7] NOTE YOUR EXPERIENCE OF VEGETATIVE PROPAGATION

The dark form of this species is easily propagated with leaves or leaf sections and has near 100% germination when potted in the growing medium mentioned above. Even small leaves will germinate easily. The bella form and the Vietnam form seem to need larger sturdier leaves to be successfully propagated with leaves. The bella form seems to be the slowest growing and the most challenging of these three forms.

B. masoniana

B. ningmingensis var. bella | Photo: In Search of Small Things

B. masoniana

B. ningmingensis (Vietnam form) | Photo: In Search of Small Things