Begonia Tamaya is a wondrous plant of the Begoniaceae family. It is a resilient and robust plant having grassy-green speckled leaves and white to pink, beautiful hanging flowers. It is a tropical shrub that looks like a miniature tree. Due to its fewer care needs and easy-to-grow features, it is a popular ornamental houseplant. Here is an easy guide on how to care for a Begonia Tamaya as a houseplant.
- Begonia Corallina
- Bamboo Begonia
- Family: Begoniaceae
- Genus: Begonia
- Variety: Begonia Tamaya
About the Genus Begonia
Begonia is one of the largest genera of angiosperms. It contains 1831 species of epiphytes, terrestrial plants, herbs, and subshrubs. These species are native to South and Central America, Africa, and Southern Asia.
Origin and Distribution
This species was introduced in Brazil. It is also found in South America and South Asia.
Begonia Tamaya Features
Foliage and Stem
Begonia Tamaya has fresh-green elliptical leaves. These leaves have white speckles on them. This plant has a thick stem that gives it a small tree-like appearance.
Begonia Tamaya ‘White’ blooms at various times of the year. Its flowers are white in color and hang below the foliage. These grow in clusters on the thin, green branches. A hybrid of Tamaya x Begonia maculata has beautiful pale pink to carmine flowers.
It is a beautiful evergreen plant that stays green and fresh throughout the year. Its leaves do not get all-brown in autumn and do not fall off the branches.
This plant attains a mature height of one meter. Its foliage and stem grow straight upwards and occupies more height than space. It is a gorgeous pot plant for house entrances.
When grown indoors, this plant does not need much maintenance, as the temperature stays constant. But if grown outdoors, you will have to protect it. Never let the temperature drop below 15°C. The best place to grow it is inside a kitchen or bathroom where the temperature and humidity stay in the required range for most of the year.
It is a tropical plant, so it loves high humidity. Never let the moisture levels fall below 40%. Your plant will start to lose its colors if the humidity decreases below the required level. You must increase the moisture around it by trying different DIY methods.
It is a drought-tolerant plant that can survive days of low water availability. If you forget to water this plant for a while, it will still live and survive. It is preferable to under-water the plant instead of overwatering it, in case of any confusion.
Disease and Pest Resistance
Bacterial leaf spot and root rot are two common diseases of Begonia Tamaya. These two cannot be treated, only prevented. Regulating the watering frequency is an effective way to preventing these two deadly diseases.
Mealybugs, thrips, and Black Vine Weevil attack the beautiful foliage of this plant. These pests can be avoided by keeping the foliage dry and by applying insecticide.
Begonia Albopicta Tamaya is a fast-growing plant that reaches its maximum height as soon as possible. Its growth rate can be increased by moving its pot to a brightly lit spot.
The USDA plant hardiness growth zones for this plant are 10 to 11.
The foliage of this plant is toxic for humans, cats, and dogs. It contains oxalate crystals. When ingested, these crystals diffuse into the tissues and convert into oxalic acid. This oxalic acid causes severe irritation and swelling in the mouth, throat, and GIT. This is why it should be kept away from babies and pets.
It is a low-maintenance plant that does not ask for much from its grower. It just needs a proper watering, fertilizing, and pruning schedule. You do not even have to re-pot it every year. This plant can be grown indoors without any hassle.
This plant prefers to go dormant in winters. As soon as light intensity and temperature decrease from September to February, this plant enters its resting stage and almost stops growing. Do not fertilize it during these days.
Begonia Tamaya Care
Its care requirements involve regular watering. You should water it twice a week. It must be grown in well-draining, organic-rich, slightly acidic soil (pH 5.2-6.0). The temperature must be around 20°C. Bright, indirect sunlight is preferred for this plant. It needs to be fertilized every month.
Let the plant get dry between watering. Always check the topsoil for dampness. The easy way to do so is to insert your finger into the soil till your first knuckle. If it comes out dry, your plant needs to be watered. Do not pour cold or too hot water; lukewarm would do the best for this plant.
The average watering frequency is one to two times every week in summers. In winters, when the temperature and transpiration rate is low, the watering needs for Begonia Tamaya decrease due to the conditions. Avoid waterlogged or moist soil as it can make this plant susceptible to root rot.
Begonia albopicta Tamaya grows well in a wide range of pH. The pH of its soil can range from 5.2 to 6.0. Slightly acidic soil lets the plant absorb more nutrients from the soil. Peat moss in the soil lowers the pH, so this ingredient must be included in this plant’s potting mix.
The best potting mix is the one you make on your own by mixing peat moss, perlite, and potting soil. These three ingredients increase the drainage and aeration of the soil. Do not add too much perlite, as an excessive amount will not enable the potting mix to retain moisture.
Semi-shade and dappled sunlight are best for the proper growth and coloration of this plant. Its leaves cannot tolerate direct sunlight, so keep its pot in a spot where indirect, bright sunlight shines upon its foliage. Direct sunlight in the morning is somewhat important for the foliage too to carry out photosynthesis and maintain its bright colors.
Morning sun rays are not so harsh on the leaves. Place this plant near a window where the plant will get the morning sun but will be safe from the scorching afternoon sun rays. An east or north-facing window will be the best for its placement.
The ideal temperature for the healthy growth of Begonia Corallina Tamaya is 20°C. The temperature must not be too cold nor too hot around it. Luckily, inside the houses, the temperature does not fluctuate much; you can easily grow it indoors without the need to regulate temperature. But if you want to grow this plant outside in your home garden, you will have to look out for temperature fluctuations. As soon as the temperature drops too much in winters, or increases above the normal range in summers, move this plant to a warmer spot.
This plant requires above-average humidity inside a home to grow properly. Its leaves need high levels of moisture in their surroundings to maintain their freshness and coloration. It is a tropical plant, so it thrives in high humidity; the optimum humidity for this tropical fella is 60% to 80%. You can increase the humidity inside your home by installing a humidifier. Another effective method is to place the plant in a group with other houseplants. All the plants will transpire and increase the humidity naturally.
You should fertilize this plant once every month with a balanced houseplant fertilizer. A balanced fertilizer means it should have all the essential nutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium) in balanced amounts. This plant needs to be fertilized only from April to September. These are the months of active growth. If you fertilize the plant in winters, the fertilizer will build up in the soil in the form of salts, which is dangerous for the plant.
Another fertilizing rule is to always dilute the fertilizer two times, as mentioned on the package. This means if the package asks you to add 1 tablespoon of fertilizer to one liter of water, add 1 tbsp to two liters of water instead.
Grooming and Pruning
Pruning and trimming the dead parts of the plant stimulate more growth and gives the plant a nice appearance. This plant needs pruning regularly. Whenever you see any wilted flowers, remove them by hand or scissors. This will promote more blooms.
You should always prune the dead leaves regularly. Yellow leaves should also be removed as they welcome more pests and insects. Use gardening shears to trim the plant and always disinfect the shears before using them. Pruning must be done only in the growing season.
You should not re-pot this plant until its roots have taken up all the space. When you notice any roots peeking from the drainage hole or when the plant gets root-bound, move it to a fresh pot.
Begonia Maculata Tamaya needs to be repotted after every three years. Repotting does not only include moving it to a new pot; its soil should also be renewed. Every time you re-pot this plant, add fresh soil and all-purpose fertilizer to the plant to encourage fast growth. The plant will stay in transplant shock for some days and then will start growing again.
Begonia Tamaya propagation is a piece of cake. If you know the basics, you can do it by yourself. Its propagation is done through stem cuttings. The best time to get a cutting is in its dormancy days when the plant is not actively growing. Here is an easy-peasy guide for your help.
- Take a pair of scissors and disinfect them.
- Use them to snip a stem cutting that has some buds on it.
- Make sure there are no flowers on the stem.
- Remove the bottom leaves.
- Place the cutting in a bowl of water.
- Leave it there until new roots grow out of the cutting.
- Move the cutting to a pot with a proper potting mix.
- Keep watering it. A baby Begonia will grow out in just some weeks.
Begonia Tamaya is a gorgeous plant that can be grown indoors to add beauty to your home. You can grow in a space where bright, indirect sunlight falls upon it. It is a low-maintenance shrub that does not require much maintenance and care. If you want a beautiful flowering plant growing in your living room or kitchen, this Begonia Corallina is your best choice.