Begonias range in size from small plants that grow in flower pots to tall plants that make an excellent centerpiece for your garden. Begonias have long been a favorite plant of botanists. Begonias are named after Michel Began, a Frenchman and patron of botany from the 17th century. Thousands of varieties of begonias have been cultivated since then, and nearly all of the varieties available today are hybrids. Begonias vary greatly in their growth habit, size, foliage and flower color.
Hardy begonias have large, angel-wing-shaped leaves and are a vary hardy variety. Hardy begonias should be planted in partial shade and in well-drained soils for best growth. This variety grows between 2 to 3 feet tall and spreads vigorously. Hardy begonias produce numerous small pink flowers that bloom above the dark green leaves in late summer.
Wax begonias are some of the most colorful and versatile varieties available. Perfect for growing in garden beds or potted containers, wax begonias require little care once planted and can withstand drought as well as full sun without any problem. Wax begonias grow 8 to 24 inches tall. These begonias are attractive annual flowers that bloom throughout the summer. Their foliage and flower color vary greatly by cultivar, but common colors include white, yellow, orange, rose and red inflorescence.
Dragon wing begonias are a large variety known for their long blooming period and distinct shape. This begonia grows up to 3 feet tall and produces flowers from spring until the first frost without interruption. This variety is sterile, so it can focus all of its energy on flower production. Dragon wing begonias grow well in both full sun or shade but requires well drained soils to flourish. Foliage is deep green with a waxy appearance, while the flowers are pink and numerous.