It is official, the begonia has passed the day lily as my favorite flower. Maybe it is because they require even less care than the day lily or maybe because the deer have not eaten them, so I have actually seen a begonia bloom as opposed to the deer food tender lily blooms that have a hard time making it to maturity. The posted pictures will serve as a reminder to me what the begonias looked like before I brought them inside for the winter to start their slow death in the sunroom.
Flower of the Day – June 9
“I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you simply, without problems or pride: I love you in this way because I do not know any other way of loving but this, in which there is no I or you, so intimate that your hand upon my chest is my hand, so intimate that when I fall asleep your eyes close.”
― Pablo Neruda, 100 Love Sonnets
“Two Succulent Loves,” Peach Begonia, Hillsboro, Oregeon
With around 1,500 species, Begonia is the sixth largest genera of flowering plants. The American Begonia Society classifies begonias into several major groups: cane-like, shrub-like, tuberous, rhizomatous, semperflorens (or wax begonias), rex, trailing-scandent, thick-stemmed.
Reiger Begonias are a hybrid cross between tuberous and wax Begonias. They are not known in truly wild environment. Reiger Begonias produce beautiful ‘rose-like’ blooms in bright yellows, reds, pinks, and even white.
The Rieger begonia is also known as hiemalis begonia. The original plant was a cross between a standard wax begonia and a tuberous begonia and has since evolved into a thriving category of its own. They are also sometimes called elatior begonias.
Today, the flower variety is achieved by crossing existing hybrids with each other and standardizing for color.