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Fact sheet: Begonia


For beautiful foliage and a constant display of color throughout the season, grow begonias.


Most begonias that we grow outside will be between 8 inches and 2 feet tall.

Ornamental Features

Begonias are grown for their foliage and/or for their attractive flowers. Begonias flower throughout the summer and up to the first frost. They can be used as bedding plants, in window boxes and in baskets and other containers.


Disease problems associated with begonias include Botrytis blight and stem rot, powdery mildew, and Pythium root and stem rot. The major pests of begonias are mealy bugs, spider mites, scales, snails and slugs.

Landscape Use

Begonias will not grow out of bounds and are ideal for small flowerbeds. Plants should be placed 12 inches apart for the best effect in the garden and somewhat closer in containers. Begonias look best when used in mass.

Most begonias grow well in partial shade and in a moist, well-drained soil with plenty of organic matter. In general, begonias need bright light to flower well. Some will burn if the light is too intense. Bronze-leaved wax begonias grow better with full sun than other types.

Begonias are not “heavy feeders,” so fertilizer should be applied in moderation.

Fact sheet: Begonias


Sold at Nassau County Master Gardener Plant Sale:
Begonia ‘Bonita Shea’
Bonita Shea Begonia
Begonia erythrophylla Beefsteak Begonia
Begonia x semperflorens-cultorum Angel Wing Begonia