How Long Do Begonias Live?
Begonias, also known as wax begonias, are a type of flowering plant that are native to tropical and subtropical regions around the world. These plants are popular in gardening due to their bright and colorful flowers, making them a popular choice for gardeners looking to add a bit of color to their outdoor spaces.
While these plants can bring much joy and color to any garden, they unfortunately have a relatively short lifespan compared to other types of plants—most only living 2-3 years even with proper care and maintenance.
In this article, we will discuss what causes this short lifespan, as well as provide tips on how to extend the life of your begonia plant so it can bring joy to your garden for longer than the average begonia lifespan.
Types Of Begonias
Begonias come in two main varieties: cane begonias and non-cane begonias. Cane begonias, also known as angel wings, have thick stems with large leaves and brightly colored flowers that bloom in summer or autumn, depending on the species. Non-cane begonias have smaller leaves and more delicate stems than cane varieties, however, they produce more blooms during their growing season (spring to autumn).
Care Requirements For Both Types Of Begonias
The care requirements for both types of begonias are similar, however, there are some subtle differences between them that should be noted when caring for them in order to maximize their lifespan and health in your garden.
Both types of begonias require regular watering, however, non-cane varieties should be watered more frequently than cane varieties due to their smaller root systems and delicate stems which can easily dry out if not given enough water regularly throughout the growing season (spring through autumn).
When watering your begonia plant, try not to wet its leaves or flowers as this can lead to fungal diseases such as mildew or root rot which can significantly shorten its lifespan if left untreated.
Additionally, keep an eye out for signs of overwatering such as yellowing or wilting leaves which could indicate that you’re providing too much water too often, if this is the case you should reduce the frequency with which you’re providing water until the problem resolves itself (or until you have a better understanding on how often your particular type needs water).
Both types of begonia prefer moderate temperatures—ideally between 60-85 degrees Fahrenheit—in order to thrive, however, if temperatures become too cold (below 55 degrees Fahrenheit) then cane varieties will go dormant until temperatures reach more favorable levels again (at which point they will resume growth).
On the other hand non-cane varieties do not go dormant in cold temperatures but instead may experience stunted growth or yellowing/wilting leaves if exposed to temperatures below 55 degrees Fahrenheit for an extended period of time so it’s important that you keep an eye out for any signs indicating an unfavorable change in temperature so you can take corrective action before it becomes a problem (e.g., move your plant indoors if necessary).
Sunlight Requirements For Both Types Of Begonia Plants
In addition to temperature requirements, both types of begonia plants require some amount of direct sunlight—ideally between 4-6 hours per day—in order to thrive but should be shielded from direct sunlight during midday when temperatures tend to be at their highest, additionally non-cane varieties should be shielded from full sun exposures all together as they tend not to handle direct sunlight well and may suffer from sunburns if exposed too long (resulting in yellowing/wilting leaves).
As with temperature changes it’s important that you monitor your plant’s exposure levels so you can take corrective action early before any damage is done due overexposure or lack thereof (for example by moving it indoors during midday or shielding it from direct sunlight).
Begonias are beautiful flowering plants that bring much joy and color into any garden, however they unfortunately have relatively short lifespans compared other plants due various factors such as temperature changes or inadequate care/maintenance routines so it’s important that you understand what type(s) of care these plants need in order maximize their longevity in your garden (e.g., regular watering schedules while avoiding wetting their leaves or flowers, shielding them from direct sunlight during midday hours, protecting them from cold temperatures etc.).
Additionally there are certain tips one can employ in order help extend the life span of these lovely little flowering plants such as misting them regularly with water or adding peat moss around their roots which will help keep moisture levels at optimal levels thereby preventing dehydration or root rot which could otherwise lead a shortened lifespan for your beloved Begonia plant(s).