BEGONIA HARVEST - 2004
This year we finally have our Begonias "harvested". They really were not killed by frost, but by Oct28th, enough miserable weather loomed to get them out of the ground.
Hope you enjoy the rather long pictorial story!
The first candidate was this lovely white...
Here is the results of cutting off the bloom & foliage....
I usually cut the folaige off quite close to the ground,....
dump it in the wheelbarrow, then pop the tuber out of the ground...clean it off and file it in a labelled strawberry basket.
These baskets seem to work very well to keep the tubers separate and the colors ID'd
Some of the tubers are getting a little large to fit! The few blooms here and there are just reminders!
These pink ones were next!
I work my way through the bed , usually plucking all of a color type, then moving on to the next.
I have more reds/scarlets and salmon shades so they are the last.
Here is a group of tubers grouped in a tray...I might trim a few of the stalks, but usually leave them in the basement to dry....take off the stem as it shrivels and then pack them in cardboard boxes with newspaper in between and put in the cold room until late April.
It doesn't take long to generate a full wheelbarrow of debris...this is about half...
Those colors that are quite similar I put in a propagation tray...some of these are very large and don't fit a basket anyway.
The very large tuber on the right panel of this pic has been with me for at least 25 years.
One interesting type of Begonia is B.grandis ...it has very decorative foliage and tubers which are very small and dense...it also is planted much deeper than the usual begonias.
Here are some of those leaves on top of the pile...there is still one tuber to be cut off....
They have very rooty tubers, which have to dry out quite a bit before storage...
The last thing to do in this bed is to remove the soaker hose and store it away for the winter....we didn't need this very much this summer.
There is always a fair amount of inward lamenting at this Begonia digging task, but since it was so late this year I may have escaped that.
A view of part of the Begonia bed prior to late fall.