Height: 15-30cm (6-12in)
Planting distance: 20-25cm (8-10in)
Features:summer to autumn
Soil: rich: moist, well-drained
Site: sun or partial shade
There are now two recognised types offor summer bedding and growing: Fibrous-rooted begonia (begonia semperflorens) and its varieties are grown as . The plants, which generally reach 15-30cm (6-12in) high, are smothered with small, red, pink or white from early summer to early autumn. In autumn, take them indoors as winter pot plants – flowering will continue il the room is well lit.
Tuberous-rootedare large-flowered types, traditionally grown from tubers. Increasingly, however, they are grown from .
FIBROUS-ROOTED ‘Ambassador’, an F1 hybrid, comes in a good range of colours and is very early flowering from seed.
‘Cocktail’, an F1 hybrid, has white, pink, rose, salmon and red flowers and contrasting deep bronze foliage.
‘Coco Mixed’, an F1 hybrid, comes in mixed colours and has bronze foliage.
‘Devon Gems’, an F1 hybrid, has red, pink and white flowers with glossy, chocolate-brown, bronze or green.
‘Frilly Dilly’, an F1 hybrid, has green foliage and scarlet and pink flowers with frilled petals.
‘Organdy’, an F1 hybrid, comes in a wide range of flower colours and has green or bronze foliage. The plants are very compact.
‘Party Fun’, an F1 hybrid, has pink, scarlet, rose and white blooms and green or bronze foliage. It is a tall variety, reaching 30cm (1 ft).
‘Thousand Wonders Red’, an F1 hybrid, has cerise-scarlet flowers and light green leaves.
‘Thousand Wonders’, an F1 hybrid, has deep rose flowers and light green foliage.
‘Thousand Wonders White’, an F1 hybrid, has white flowers and light green leaves.
semperflorcns ‘Devon Gems’ ‘Viva’, an F1 hybrid, has pure white blooms and dark green leaves.
TUBEROUS-ROOTED ‘Chanson’, an F1 hybrid with a pendulous habit, bears large, semi-double flowers in many colours. It is ideal for tubs and baskets.
‘Non Stop’, an F1 hybrid mixture, bears large, double flowers in a host of bright colours. (For other begonias grown from tubers, see A-Z of Garden Plants Bulbs, conns and tubers.)
Sowin trays of seed in late winter to early spring under glass at 16-18°C (61-64°F). Do not cover the seed as it needs light to assist germination.
Transplantinto boxes of compost when the first true appears.
Harden off and then plant out in late spring, spaced 20-25cm (8-10in) apart, in rich, moist but well-drained soil, in sun or light shade.
Pests and diseases:appears as a white coating on leaves and .