Care Level: Intermediate
Light: Shade to Partial-Shade with bright ambient light
Plant Size: 15-30cm
Terrarium Size: Medium
Placement: In Soil
Introduction to Begonia coriacea
This dwarf begonia, with its round leaves and hot pink flowers, is sure to impress in a terrarium setting. It can be a little difficult to get started, and is a bit picky. If you’re up for the challenge, keep reading!
Lighting, Watering, and Humidity Requirements:
Begonia coriacea will be happiest in shade to partial shade with the plant light bulb over 30cm away from its highest point. This means despite its petite size it will fit best in a medium sized terrarium. Try to plant it under an overhang of cork bark or similar to keep direct light off its leaves. It likes the bright ambient light provided by terrarium bulbs. It also likes a temperature of between 30-45 celsius and appreciates humidity above 40%. It will tolerate consistent high humidity levels, but prefers periodic drops. Plant it in soil in an area where there is good drainage, as it hates sitting in stagnant water. It would do very well if the terrarium has a drainage layer of rocks or clay balls to keep it elevated above the waterline. Peat moss also allows adequate drainage of excess water from around the roots. Give the roots time to dry out between waterings. This begonia does not like water sitting on its leaves, so try to water it from soil level.
This begonia does well as a foreground or midground plant, depending on the size of the terrarium. With its green leaves and hot reddish pink undersides, chunky stalks, and gorgeous pink flowers, you’ll want to give this begonia a place of pride. As a foreground plant make sure it isn’t in direct sunlight. For substrate, soil works, but a soil peat moss mix will make it happier. It can also be planted in a pot built into the background of the terrarium, but remember to keep it away from those hot light bulbs.
Maintenance and Seasonal Care:
Coriacea blooms in late winter to early spring, and if you give it temperature variances mimicking the seasons, it is more likely to bloom for you. It will tolerate gentle pruning but it shouldn’t ever need it. Gently remove any dead or suspect leaves as they are found.
-Rhizomatous! Can be propagated by splitting the rootball, dividing the rhizomes, tubers, or bulbs, or from leaf or stem cuttings!
-Still fairly rare in the hobby!
-Grows outside in Los Angeles, California as an annual.