I try to keep a
minimum temperature of 50°F, Tony about the same. Grow at a temperature you
can afford, and possibly choose varieties that will tolerate colder conditions. Our source of heating comes from "Parwin Heaters" also with
this you get good air circulation. In my small greenhouse the
is 40°F, on cold nights dropping lower. This greenhouse is where I over-winter Fuchsias, Geraniums, etc. Some plants of my Begonias were
put in there to take a chance. They survive but look a little sick at the
moment, but I know they will come back. Never throw plants
away too soon, they may look dead, a bit shrivelled with no leaves but they
may just be in a coma (more on this later).
My plants are kept on the dry side all winter, even in early March when
new growth is beginning to appear I still only water sparingly. I never try to push
any plant into growth with feed and extra heat during low light, short day months as
this leads to weak, lanky, floppy growth.
propagation is mainly by leaves with their stems rooted in water. I now
add Perlite, Vermiculite or Grit to the water. By using just water I found
when they were ready for potting the roots just tangled around themselves
in a tight bunch. By adding the above materials they come out in a
nice spread position ready for potting into small pots. After potting they
go back onto the potting bench for a couple of weeks to get established. Small lengths of Rhizomes can be used as can stem cuttings for Canes, etc.
These are inserted into compost with added Perlite.
I have also tried the
"Flat Leaf Contact" with cuts across the veins. I said I tried so you may
gather with not much success, but I do keep trying.