Betty Vander Poorten’s Begonia Collection


Begonias Grown by a Queensland Begonia Society Member

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Mrs Betty Vander Poorten has been a member of the Queensland Begonia Society for many years, during which she has grown numerous begonia cultivars in green houses built by her husband, Hals.

CULTURE NOTES – APRIL MEETING (from Winter Journal 2011)

I was introduced to the world of begonias when a friend gave me a piece of a gorgeous B. ‘Silver Jewell’ she had in her home. Soon after we went to an open garden at Victoria Point where there was a lovely B. listada. The owner very generously gave me a piece of her plant. I was seriously ‘hooked’ when I went to the annual Begonia Show soon after. My family is surprised that my interest has not waned!

I have over the years tried various growing mediums and have now arrived at putting down my leaves in either washed river sand only or a mix of two parts washed river sand, one part Perlite and one part coir peat. The latter mix I find is excellent for cane cuttings. I find that if I use a root growing hormone powder or pure unadulterated honey to dip the cuttings in, it encourages quicker propagation. Unlike my earlier efforts, I now wait until the plants are really well established before I transplant them.

I now take care not to overpot. I also use small stones to weight the plants down, instead of using sate sticks.

I have lost many begonias by being too generous with feeding. Every so often, I use Confidor to prevent bugs and caterpillars from feeding on them. I use Baycor for mildew and have recently started using a concentrated form of Seasol called Eco-Cweed. This is in powder form. Half a teaspoon is dissolved in a little water and added to a litre of water. This is very good value and does not smell as much. Of course, it also takes up less space and is a lot easier than shaking a large quantity of liquid Seasol.

Happy gardening.

Betty Vander Poorten

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All photos were taken by Click here to contact SoundEagle (Webmaster and Designer)SoundEagle in the summer morning between 10.39am and 10.52am on 18th (Tuesday) of December 2012 at Mrs Betty Vander Poorten’s home garden.

 

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