What Are the Different Species of Begonias?


The American Begonia Society serves as the international registration authority for the many species of begonia. The society maintains a list of up to 1,000 detailed listings for begonia species. Botanists divide begonias into eight horticultural classifications.


  • Cane-like begonias possess a hardy stem, similar to bamboo. Cane begonias can grow up to 12 feet tall with leaves up to 14 inches long.


  • The American Begonia Society calls rex begonias the "showboats of the begonia world." Known among begonia aficionados for showy leaves in a variety of colors, these begonias grow into diverse sizes and shapes.

Rare species

  • The shrub and thick-stemmed begonias hold the distinction as the least well-known types of begonia, according to the American Begonia Society. The shrub type offers gardeners an easy-growing begonia with eye-catching leaf shapes. Thick-stemmed begonias come in a wide variety of styles but tend to grow low along the ground.


  • Rhizomatous begonias grow from roots that creep shallowly along the ground, preventing the spring-flowering plant from growing tall.


  • Gardeners can easily identify the semperflorens begonia from the waxy appearance on the leaves. This type of begonia flowers continually with blooms in red, pink or white.


  • The tuberous begonia features prominent, colorful flowers. Trailing-scandent begonias climb along trees or fence lines and bloom profusely in the spring.

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