Edible Begonias


Learn about wild food with Green Deane. This video presents the begonia as an edible plant that has been grown around the world both as food and as an ornamental.

For more information including the culinary and medicinal uses of begonias as well as the recipes of “Begonia Tartlett” and “Begonia Spread“, visit Begonia Bonanza | Eat The Weeds and other things, too.

Culinary uses are found in Japan, India, Indonesia (a sauce for meat and fish), Myanmar, China (tea, salads and wild snack), Brazil, Mexico, Paraguay and the Philippines. For example, the leaves of Begonia fimbristipula, a deciduous herb with tubers 7-8 mm in diameter, are harvested and dried for brewing a beverage (tea) in Guangdong, China.

The Journal of Economic Botany has mentioned the following edible begonias:

  1. B. annulata (aka B. hatacoa)
  2. B. auriculata
  3. B. barbata
  4. B. fimbristipula (used to make a tea)
  5. B. gracilis
  6. B. grandis var evansiana
  7. B. hernandioides
  8. B. malabarica
  9. B. mannii
  10. B. palmata
  11. B. picta
  12. B. plebeja (stems peeled, sap is used to make a drink)
  13. B. rex
  14. B. roxburghii (cooked)
  15. B. semperflorens

The Food Plants International Database lists more than 50 species as follows:

  1. B. aptera
  2. B. auriculata
  3. B. barbata
  4. B. baviensis
  5. B. chlorosticta
  6. B. crassirostris
  7. B. cucullata
  8. B. dryadis
  9. B. elatostemmoides
  10. B. eminii
  11. B. fagoproides
  12. B. fenicis
  13. B. fimbristipula
  14. B. fusca
  15. B. fusialata
  16. B. gracilis
  17. B. grandis
  18. B. hayatae
  19. B. heracleifolia
  20. B. hirsutula
  21. B. hirtella
  22. B. incarnata
  23. B. josephi
  24. B. katoensis
  25. B. komoensis
  26. B. laciniata
  27. B. longifolia
  28. B. macrocarpa
  29. B. magnifolia
  30. B. malabarica
  31. B. manicata
  32. B. mannii
  33. B. muricata
  34. B. nelumbiifolia
  35. B. nitida
  36. B. obversa
  37. B. palmata
  38. B. picta
  39. B. plebeja
  40. B. poggei
  41. B. rex
  42. B. roxburghii
  43. B. rubella
  44. B. rubrovenia
  45. B. sciaphila
  46. B. scutifolia
  47. B. semperflorens
  48. B. sessilifolia
  49. B. sinensis
  50. B. siriculata
  51. B. spp.
  52. B. squarrosa
  53. B. tuberosa

According to Farmacy Friday | Agriscaping, Begonia semperflorens has the tastes of lime, lemon and green apple. Its medicinal value lies in pain relief.

According to Noble Media Works, Begonia malabarica has the power to cure serious nervous system problems and chest pain, to treat cold and congestion, to change skin tone and remove wrinkles.

Some animals, however cute and small, are not averse to consuming begonias with gusto.

4 thoughts on “Edible Begonias

  1. Pingback: 2019 Annual Show of Begonias: 🍃Bold & Beautiful🎨 | Queensland Begonia Society

  2. Pingback: Queensland Begonia Society 🍃🌿ღೋ | SoundEagle 🦅ೋღஜஇ

Leave a Reply to Bruce R French Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.