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Zone
Zones 14-24, H1, H2
Partial Sun
Partial
Regular Water
Moderate

Begonia

Rhizomatous Begonia
Begoniaceae
Annuals, Perennials, Shrubs, Flowers

Like rex begonias, these growfrom a rhizome. Although somehave handsome flowers, theyare grown primarily for foliage,which varies widely in shape,color, and texture among speciesand varieties. Among thedozens of species and varietiesin this group is the old favoriteB. masoniana, called iron crossbegonia; its large, puckeredgreen leaves have a chocolatebrown pattern resembling aMaltese cross.

Rhizomatous begonias performwell as houseplants: givethem bright light and water onlywhen the top inch or so of soil is dry. Plant them in wide, shallowpots. They flower from winterthrough summer, the seasonvarying among specific plants.White to pink flowers appear inclusters on erect stems abovethe foliage. Rhizomes will growover edge of pot, eventuallyforming a ball-shaped plant; ifyou wish, cut rhizomes back topot. The old rhizome will branchand grow new leaves. Root thepieces of rhizome in mixture ofhalf peat moss, half perlite.

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