Begonia Leaves Turning Brown And Dying

Question From: Davel, Mpumalanga, South Africa
Q: I have just purchased a few cheap begonia plants from my supermarket in Maitland, NSW Australia and the leaves have started to turn brown in large areas on some leaves then dying, some leaves one one plant seem to have turned into what looks like lace, plants were dry when purchased so I put them into my kitchen sink and ran the tap over them, young leaves seem to be OK

A: Obviously they have been abused. Too much water, not enough, cold temps, and /or caterpillars. Here are some resources in Australia that should be helpful. Check out the new begonia garden at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney (Bed 31), and if you like what you see, consider joining the Begonia Society to meet with friends to learn more about begonias. NSW Begonia Society: (02) 96791386 Victorian Begonia Society: (03) 53362125 Queensland Begonia Society: (07) 3359 4319 South Australian Begonia Society: (08) 8264 6490 Also do a Google search on growing begonias in Australia, Best And Happy Yardening, Nancy