Last year (2022), I decided to try out a new begonia plant in a planter on a balcony overlooking the city with an impressive view. Each season, I change up the “filler plants” in the large planters at this site and I must consider environmental factors such as extreme winds, strong full sun half the day, potential lack of watering, and flowers staying on the plant (not being blown away by the winds which are intense from time to time).
When I returned in the early autumn season, I was very impressed with the massive size and performance of this cultivar. It grew from a small starter size plant to this massive, impressive size and the color intensity of the blooms was very vivid and bright along with its darker colored glossy foliage. I definitely gasped in awe of how beautiful it looked when I walked out onto this high-rise balcony.
On each side of the planter with the begonia plant, I planted various herbs, which as you can see, grow quite well in this location. Each planter is filled with soil mix and receives a good amount of growing space below. The owners of this site are very good at watering the plants as needed as well. In addition, begonias are tropical or subtropical plants, so they do well in hot locations and bloom throughout the summer here in Connecticut, but because they are not hardy to our planting zone, they must be taken down or overwintered before frost hits them during the autumn season.
These clients like color on their balcony, and this begonia did not fail. Its growth habit is mounding, and its shiny leaves are a bronze color (another bonus); I love when plants offer darker tones to serve as contrasting colors in mixed arrangements in container gardens or planters, patio pots, etc. The flowers look a little orange toned here in my photo, but they are a vibrant red color. The other bonus about begonias, in general, is that they can take sun or partly shady sites. This site receives full sun in the mornings followed by shade in the afternoons once the sun is hidden by the tall building. The overall height of the begonia reached was about 24″. That is a whopper of a begonia, and that is the name of this one: Begonia ‘Whopper Red with Bronze Leaf’.
Another added benefit of the size of this begonia was it was visible from within the home. Nothing like seeing color when you are enjoying the expansive views from the large windows of your living spaces.
|A COLOR PROVIDER?||YES – VIBRANT AND INTENSE!|
|FULL SUN EXPOSURE?||YES – HANDLED HOT SUN TILL NOON, THEN SHADE|
|TOLERATES STRONG INTENSE WINDS?||SURE DID – THE WALL PROBABLY HELPS HOWEVER|
|HANDLES SUMMER TROPICAL HEAT||YUP! IT’S TROPICAL! THIS PLANTS LIKES HEAT.|
|IMPRESSIVE SIZE||ABSOLUTELY – IF YOU WANT BIG, GET THIS BEGONIA|
|HANDLES PERIODS OF DROUGHT||IT DID – LAST YEAR WAS A DROUGHTY YEAR TOO IN CT|
|DOESN’T DROP FLOWERS||IT DID BUT NOT TOO MANY – BEARABLE|
|PROVIDES CONTRAST COLOR||BRONZE SHINY LEAVES|
|EASY CLEAN UP AFTER SEASON||IT IS NOT TOO DIFFICULT TO REMOVE, STEMS BREAK THOUGH|
|EASY TO GROW||ABSOLUTELY|
Above is a PDF I found online by Southern Living Plant Collection for your reference.
Thank you for visiting!
Cathy Testa of Container Crazy CT
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