Louisiana growers dedicated to the worlds slowest art form
Every gardener has their favorite plant. Sometimes we get a beautiful plant at the nursery, bring it home and put it where we think it looks great, only to watch it wither and die no matter what we do. Sometimes that "perfect" spot was perfect for us, not the plant. Sometimes we can be the cause by killing with kindness. Too much light, or not enough? Too much water? Wrong soil? What happened? If you have enjoyed those delicate plants with the fancy colored leaves but have been afraid to try one, or you brought one home and pampered it only to watch your hopes and wishes melt into the dirt, or had success and want to try more, you should be with us!
If you have a shady spot where nothing seems to grow well There's a Begonia for that!
Bayou Begonia of the Month November 2019 Begonia Sizemoreae by Freda Holley
Begonia sizemoreae (Fig. 1) was collected by Mary Sizemore from Vietnam, according to Mark Tebbit, from a riverbank near Hanoi in 1996. It was then assigned the Unidentified No. U388, but in 2004 was described and named by Ruth Kiew in honor of Mary Sizemore. It has similarities to Begonia rex.
My plant came from Harmony Foliage in 2015 and has thus grown well for me in the Louisiana heat and humidity for four years in contrast to Begonia rex, which I can never keep alive long in our environment. The female flower seedpod has the shape typical of other begonias with 22 chromosomes including that one extra large wing seen in Fig. 2. It crosses well with other begonias of this type and has given me a number of large leaved hybrids that are very heat tolerant. From the photo you can also see if you look carefully at its leaves that their dominant unique feature is a surface filled with long hairs, a feature that has not carried over for me into its hybrids. I have also produced seedlings of the species and find that they grow rather slowly, but are healthy and beautiful. Well grown it can be a prize winner in any show and I recommend it to all Louisiana growers.