Begonias for Containers and the Garden

  • 01 of 09

    Begonia 'Charm'

    Wax Begonia
    Variegated Leaves Contrast With Pink Flowers. Shannon Ross/Radius Images/Getty Images

    If you’ve picked up a six-pack of wax begonias at the supermarket to add to a flowering container on the front porch, you’ve barely begun to scratch the surface of the Begoniaceae family. Once you get a sampling of the more than 10,000 varieties under cultivation, your hunger to learn more about these easy-to-grow plants with succulent foliage might have you sending off for a subscription to the Begonian, the bi-monthly journal of the American Begonia Society. Here are just a few to whet your...MORE appetite.

    Charm Begonia

    Most variegated plants have white markings on green leaves, but the ‘Charm’ begonia has vivid yellow splotches on bright green leaves, giving it a psychedelic effect. Make this begonia the focal point of your flowering containers. This type of begonia grows to a height between six and 12 inches with a width spanning between 18 and 24 inches. This plant will need partial exposure to the sun.

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  • 02 of 09

    Begonia ‘Solenia Rose’

    Get the Look of Roses Without the Fuss Tuberous Begonia 'Solenia' Rose. Photo © Jamie McIntosh

    You can save the tubers of ‘Solenia Rose’ at the end of the growing season for blossoms next year. Dig them in the fall, dry them for 10 days, and store them in a cool, dark place until the following spring. It grows to a height between 10 and 12 inches and the width can span from 18 to 24 inches. Like most begonia's this variety requires partial sun.

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  • 03 of 09

    Begonia ‘Richmondensis’

    A Begonia With Showy Foliage Begonia ‘Richmondensis’. Photo © Jamie McIntosh

    The bronzy-green foliage of Begonia ‘Richmondensis’ seems to color-shift in different light conditions. The underside of the leaves has a reddish tone, which gives them special appeal in hanging baskets. This variety needs some light shade to grow properly. It's a rather large plant with a height that reaches between 18 and 24 inches with a width between 12 and 24 inches.

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  • 04 of 09

    Begonia ‘Nonstop Mocca Yellow’

    An Unusual Hue in the Begonia Family Nonstop Begonia Mocca Yellow. Photo © Jamie McIntosh

    The ‘Non-stop’ series is the preferred tuberous begonia for regions with hot summers. Tuberous begonias like moderation in all things, including light, water, and fertilizer. You'll want to put this plant in a partial sun area. It grows to a height of 10 to 12 inches with a width between 18 and 24 inches.

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  • 05 of 09

    Begonia ‘Nonstop Rose’

    Large, Abundant Blossoms for Hanging Baskets Begonia 'Nonstop' Rose. Photo © Jamie McIntosh

    If you remove the spent blossoms of Begonia ‘Nonstop Rose’ and allow the plant to put its energy into more blossoms instead of seed production, you can achieve the mass of flowers shown in this container. Keep the plants in an area sheltered from the wind to prevent bud drop. It grows to the average Begonia size of 10 to 12 inches tall and 18 to 24 inches in width. This plant requires partial sun.

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  • 06 of 09

    Begonia ‘Ambassador’ Series

    The Common Bedding Begonia Green Leaf Wax Begonia. Photo © Jamie McIntosh

    The thick, fleshy leaves of wax begonias make them a good choice for beginning gardeners, as the plants are drought and pest resistant. The compact plants of ‘Ambassador’ series grow large flowers in shades of red, white, and pink. This plant requires partial sunlight. This is one of the smaller Begonia varieties growing between six and 12 inches high and only spanning eight inches across.

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  • 07 of 09

    Begonia ‘Cocktail’ Series

    A Wax Begonia for Full Sun Bronze-Leaf Begonia. Photo © Jamie McIntosh

    Dark-leafed begonias can take the sun’s heat better than green-leafed varieties. It can be planted in partial or full sun locations. This tidy bedding plant won’t overstep its boundaries, so tucking it between green-leafed garden plants will highlight its bronze foliage and fill in landscape gaps. It grows to a height between six and eight inches and spans eight to 12 inches wide.

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  • 08 of 09

    Begonia ‘Doublet White’

    Tiny Flowers Sport Masses of Petals Begonia 'White Doublet'. Photo © Jamie McIntosh

    The fully double blossoms of the ‘Doublet’ begonia series are barely the size of your thumbnail, but smother the plants throughout the growing season. This wax begonia variety doesn’t produce seeds, and therefore needs no pinching or deadheading. This type requires partial shade and will grow to a height of 12 inches. It will grow between eight and 12 inches wide.

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  • 09 of 09

    Begonia ‘Torch Pink’

    An Angel Wing Begonia 'Torch Pink' Angel Wing Begonia. Photo © Jamie McIntosh

    The angel wing begonias are classified as cane-like begonias, because of their long stems that look like bamboo canes. Grow the ‘Torch Pink’ begonia in bright light to prevent it from becoming lanky. This large plant will grow to 12 inches in height and 24 inches across. It needs bright filtered light to grow properly.