Overwintering Begonias

Dear Martin

What is the best way to overwinter my tuberous Begonias?  

Any advice you can give me will be gratefully received.


Dear Anne

Many thanks for your enquiry concerning the best way to lift, store and successfully steer your begonia tubers through the winter.

If you’re familiar with lifting and overwintering dahlia tubers then you’ll find begonias require a similar care programme, the main details of which I’ve listed below. I’ve also tagged a few spring planting pointers on the end for you!

  • Wait until heavy frosts have blackened the foliage before lifting and storing
  • Cut off the remains of the foliage leaving around 5cm of growth then lift the tubers from the soil taking care not to pierce, bruise or damage them – just like harvesting potatoes really! Like any fruit, vegetable or root going into store, it’s essential that no wounds exist for diseases to get a hold
  • Rub off all soil, turn upside down and leave in a cool, frost free location (such as a shed or garage) to dry off
  • Place in a tray or box, cover with dry sand, soil or compost and place back in a shed or garage as above
  • In late winter, move the stored tubers into the light and new shoots should appear
  • Plant out in late spring when the soil has warmed and protect from any late spring frosts

Hopefully this information covers your questions and should assist you in successfully storing and replanting your tubers but if there’s anything else you’d like to know, or if you have any other questions or queries, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Many thanks once again for your enquiry and the best of luck with your begonias.

Kind Regards