Eazy Gardening

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’: The Perfect Addition to Your Garden

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’: A Beautiful Addition to Any Garden

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is a popular plant with many different names, including the angel wing begonia and the painted leaf begonia. Native to the subtropical regions of Central and South America, this plant has become popular all over the world.

It is named for its signature white variegation on dark green leaves, resembling a paintbrush stroke. In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso,’ from its appearance to its cultivation and care.

Overview of the Plant

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ belongs to the Begoniaceae family, which includes over 1,500 different species. This cultivar can grow up to three feet tall and up to two feet wide.

The leaves are broad, asymmetrical, and deeply veined, with a glossy finish. Their color is dark green that contrasts with a silvery white edge.

This variegation is characteristic of this cultivar, and it is often used in gardening for aesthetic purposes. One of the highlights of the Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is its jewel-toned flowers.

The blooms range from pink to red, with a deep, vivid shade that can brighten up any garden. Its blooming period spans from late winter to early summer, but you can prolong the bloom season by cutting back faded flowers.

These flowers attract pollinators like butterflies and hummingbirds, which helps improve the biodiversity of your garden.

Plant Cultivation and Care

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is a relatively easy plant to grow, but it requires specific care to thrive. You can propagate this plant by taking stem cuttings, which yields similar variations to the parent plant.

If you are planting from seeds, make sure to sow them indoors during the late winter season when the temperatures are cooler. Germination can take up to two weeks, so be patient with it.

Preferred Growing Conditions

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ prefers damp, well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter. It thrives in partial shade or filtered sunlight, and it does best in temperatures ranging from 60 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

Make sure to water this plant regularly, but avoid overwatering, which can lead to root rot. Always allow the soil to dry out slightly before watering again.

Potential Pest and Disease Issues

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is generally a hardy plant, but it can suffer from pest infestations and fungal diseases. Mealybugs and spider mites are the most common pests that affect this cultivar.

Control them by spraying the plant with water to wash it off or use an insecticidal soap. Fungal diseases like powdery mildew and botrytis can affect this cultivar if the air circulation is insufficient.

Make sure to leave space between plants and avoid watering from overhead.

Planting and

Maintenance Tips

When planting Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso,’ make sure to choose a location with partial shade and well-draining soil. You can add a layer of mulch to the soil surface to improve moisture retention.

Fertilize the plant every two weeks during the growing season with a balanced fertilizer. Cut back the plant after the flowering period to encourage more growth and flowering.

In summary, Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is a beautiful and popular plant with a unique variegated appearance and vivid-colored blooms. Its hardy nature and easy cultivation make it an ideal addition to any garden.

Proper care and maintenance will ensure that this plant grows healthily and rewards you with its stunning presence. Plant Propagation: Sexual and

Asexual Reproduction

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ can be propagated in two ways: sexual and asexual reproduction.

Sexual reproduction involves producing seeds through pollination, while asexual reproduction involves growing new plants from cuttings or other vegetative parts.

Sexual Reproduction

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ can produce flowers that, when pollinated, will produce seeds. The plants will produce female flowers that contain ovaries that will develop into fruits that house the seeds.

The male flowers will produce pollen that fertilizes the female flowers, initiating seed production. Before planting the seeds, it is important to ensure that the soil is fertile, well-draining, and has a neutral pH.

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ seeds should be planted no deeper than one-quarter inch below the soil surface. Maintain soil moisture while the seed germinates, which can take up to two weeks.

They should be grown indoors under lights until they are mature enough to be transplanted to outdoors.

Asexual Reproduction

Asexual propagation is faster than sexual reproduction and yields plants that are genetically identical to the parent plant, making it a great option for maintaining the cultivar and the characteristics of Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso.’ The most common asexual propagation method for Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is stem cuttings. When using stem cuttings, make the stem cut about 4 to 6 inches long and cut it at a node.

Remove the leaves from the bottom 2 inches of the stem and dip the cut end of the stem in rooting hormone powder. Place the cutting in a pot with moist soil and cover it with a plastic bag to create a humid environment.

Once roots have formed, remove the plastic bag, and provide the cutting with bright light. You can transplant them to a permanent location once they have grown.

Plant Adaptations to Different Environments

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is native to the subtropical regions of Central and South America, where it grows under the canopy of trees. This plant has adapted to grow in areas with low light levels, making it a great plant for indoor areas.

Aside from its adaptability to low light, there are other ways this plant adapts to different environments.

Water and Humidity

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ needs consistently moist soil, but at the same time, excessive watering can cause root rot. While in the tropical rainforest, this plant has adapted to retain moisture by storing it in its leaves and requires high humidity to thrive.

It can tolerate lower humidity levels, but it’s ideal to keep the plant in a location where humidity is kept between 50-60 %. This can be achieved by misting the plant regularly, placing a humidity tray, or placing the plant in a humid air environment like a bathroom.


Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ prefers temperatures between 60 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit, which is perfect for indoors. When grown indoors, avoid placing the plant near a drafty area like a door or window, or near cold air vents as it can cause cold damage to the plant.


Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ prefers partial shade or filtered sunlight, which means it is suited for window sills or areas near windows that do not receive direct sunlight, especially the afternoon sun that can cause leaf scorch. Leaves of this plant can also become damaged easily if exposed to direct sunlight, which is another reason why it is an indoor plant.


Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ thrives in soil that is rich in organic matter, well-draining, and with a neutral pH. To ensure proper drainage, add perlite or sand to the soil.

This plant may struggle if there is poor drainage or clay-heavy soil. In conclusion, whether through seed production, stem cuttings, or other vegetative parts, propagation is an important part of maintaining Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso.’ Understanding the different environmental factors and adaptations Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ makes for survival helps in creating a suitable environment for the plant.

With the right care, propagation, and environmental conditions, Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ can be enjoyed as a beautiful ornamental plant in any garden or indoor setting. Usage of Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ in Indoor and Outdoor Settings

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ has proven to be an excellent plant for indoor and outdoor settings.

Its stunning variegated leaves and vibrant flowers make it a favorite among gardeners and plant enthusiasts alike. Here is what you need to know about using this beautiful plant in indoor and outdoor settings.

Usage in Indoor Settings

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is an excellent indoor plant that can add color, luxury and style to any indoor space. It is most suitable for areas that receive low to moderate light and is often used to decorate windowsills, tables, and bookshelves.

Here are a few key tips for using this plant as an indoor plant:


When choosing a pot for this plant, make sure it has good drainage, is the correct size for the plant, and complements the dcor in a room. The Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ plants do not like being disturbed, so they do not require frequent repotting.

However, when repotting them, be sure to use soil that is rich in organic matter and well-draining.

Watering and Humidity

While indoors, you need to ensure that the plant gets enough humidity and moisture. The plant needs to be kept consistently moist, but you should avoid overwatering it.

To ensure it gets enough humidity, place the plant in a humid location, like a bathroom or next to a humidifier. You can also use a humidity tray or mist the plant regularly to maintain humidity.


When grown indoors, Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ requires bright, filtered light. It is best to place it in a location that gets at least four hours of indirect sunlight.

Be careful not to place the plant in direct sunlight, as it can scorch its leaves.

Usage in Outdoor Settings

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is popular in outdoor gardens thanks to its vibrant colors and adaptable nature. It is an excellent plant for borders, flower beds, and container gardening.

Here are some things to keep in mind when using this plant in outdoor settings:


The plant prefers partial shade or filtered sunlight and soil that is rich in organic matter with proper drainage. Be sure to amend the soil before planting to ensure it has the right pH and nutrients.

Space the plants at least two feet apart, and plant them at a depth of one inch below the surface.


Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ plants grown outdoors need consistent moisture to thrive, so water regularly. However, ensure that the soil is not water-logged.

Excess water can lead to root rot, affecting the plant’s health and growth.


While the plant prefers filtered sunlight outdoors, it can handle more direct sunlight than when grown indoors. Be careful to avoid planting the plant in direct sunlight during the hottest part of the day.

Too much direct sunlight can damage the leaves and cause leaf scorch.


To keep the plant looking its best, remove any dead or faded flowers regularly. This encourages more growth and prolongs the blooming season.

Cut back the plant after flowering to ensure that it does not become too leggy.

In Conclusion

Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is a popular plant that can thrive both indoors and outdoors, and its stunning variegated leaves and vibrant flowers make it a great addition to any indoor or outdoor area. Whether grown indoors or outdoors, ensure that it is planted in soil with the correct pH and nutrients, receives the right amount of water and humidity, and is given the right amount of sunlight.

Regular maintenance will ensure that the plant stays healthy, looks vibrant, and rewards you with its stunning presence. Toxicity of Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ to Pets and Humans

While Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is a beautiful and popular plant, it is worth noting that it can be toxic to pets and humans.

The plant contains insoluble crystals known as oxalates that can cause respiratory irritation, skin reactions, and other symptoms when ingested or inhaled.

Toxicity to Pets

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) lists Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ as toxic to cats, dogs, and horses. When ingested by these animals, the oxalates in the plant can cause mild to severe gastric upset, including vomiting, diarrhea, and drooling.

If you suspect that your pet has ingested any part of the Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ plant, contact your veterinarian immediately. Treatment may include inducing vomiting, administering activated charcoal to absorb the toxins, and providing supportive care like fluid therapy.

Toxicity to Humans

While it is not common for humans to ingest Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso,’ it is still important to take precautions when handling the plant. The oxalates in the plant can cause skin irritation, including rash, blisters, and itching.

If you come into contact with the plant, wash affected areas with soap and water immediately. If you experience any symptoms like skin irritation, shortness of breath, or eye irritation, seek medical attention.

In conclusion, while Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is a beautiful plant that adds a touch of natural beauty to any indoor or outdoor space, it is essential to take necessary precautions when handling it, and to keep it away from pets. Always wash your hands after handling the plant, and be sure to seek medical attention if you experience any symptoms of toxicity.

Safely enjoying this plant will ensure that you, your family, and pets can enjoy its beauty without any adverse effects. In conclusion, Begonia ‘Picotee Calypso’ is a stunning plant that can be grown both indoors and outdoors.

Its unique variegated appearance and vibrant-colored blooms make it a favorite among gardeners and plant enthusiasts. However, it is important to be aware of the plant’s toxicity to pets and humans.

As long as proper precautions are taken, this plant can be a safe and beautiful addition to any indoor or outdoor space. FAQs on propagating and caring for the plant, as well as its usage in indoor and outdoor settings have been addressed in this article to provide you with the necessary information to properly care for and appreciate this beautiful plant.

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