Begonias and Pentas are a good choice for adding a variety of color to your gardens. With multiple shades across all the different varieties available, there is sure to be one that fits your landscape and your aesthetic vision.
We’ve picked out a few of our favorite annuals that will add several months of color to your North Texas landscape.
Begonias are an easy-to-grow annual. They come in a variety of sizes and colors, making them an easy choice to accent your lawn and garden.
Begonias can range from as small as 6 inches, to as tall as 3 feet. The smaller varieties are good for container gardens, while the larger varieties are good for landscaping.
They usually thrive in light shade, though some newer varieties that are happy either in full shade or full sun. The begonia is a low maintenance plant that is “self-cleaning” so there is no need to deadhead the plants.
Begonias grow well in rich, well-drained soil. They need ample water but be careful not to overwater. Finding balance can keep them growing and blooming all season long.
Begonias should be well-fertilized to help them bloom consistently. They do best in warm environments and should be planted after the last frost in the spring to help them thrive. It takes a little time for them to get going so you may not see a burst of growth until after the summer heat.
To propagate from stem cuttings, cut the stems to four inches and insert them directly in a moist growing medium, such as potting mix. From there, simply water and provide proper lighting.
To grow from seeds, fill pots with seed-starting mix and lightly mist them with a spray bottle. Gently place the seeds in mix and loosely cover them with plastic wrap. This helps maintain the humidity and warmth needed for successful germination.
Keep the seedlings out of direct sunlight until they are sprouted and ready to transplant into soil.
As stated before, there are multiple varieties of begonias that come in several different colors.
The Bellagio begonia is a double-blooming plant that grows to about 14 inches tall. Bellagio begonias come in apricot, white, and bright pink blooms.
The Big Red with Green Leaf begonia produces bold reddish-pink flowers. This is a tough and vigorous plant that grows up to 18 inches tall and 12 inches wide.
The Bonfire begonia has glowing orange flowers and narrow, bronzy-green leaves. It is good for containers and it grows 20 inches tall and wide.
Big Rose with Bronze Leaf begonias have big, pink flowers with purple-bronze leaves. This is a strong, vigorous plant that can grow to 18 inches tall and 12 inches wide.
Pentas flowers are an annual that has large clusters of starry blooms. They are one of the best pollinator attracting plants. Butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds all love the flowers on pentas plants.
Pentas bloom all summer, even in the hottest conditions. They grow well both in the ground and in containers. They produce purple, red, white, and pink flowers with thick, blue-green foliage.
Pentas are low-maintenance plants that will grow year-round in zones 9-11. However, with North Texas residing in agricultural zone 8, there is some chance that these flowers may suffer in the event of a hard freeze.
These plants can be cut back in the get too long and woody and should be deadheaded to encourage a constant reproduction of blooms.They need full sun and moist, well-drained soil.
During a dry spell, pentas will need supplemental water in order to remain properly hydrated. They also need to be fertilized monthly to keep up the flower production.
Pentas are largely resistant to disease and pests, but should be monitored for spider mites and aphids. A good deterrent to these pests, and others, is encouraging a healthy population of ladybugs in your garden.
Butterfly Light Lavender pentas have lavender-pink flowers. They grow to be about 15 inches tall.
The “graffiti” varieties of pentas come in many colors, including bright red and pink. For instance, the “graffiti lipstick” is a rosy pink, while the “red lace” variety has red flowers with a white center. They grow to be 12 inches tall and are good for containers.
The Kaleidoscope Appleblossom pentas is a soft pink variety that grows to 18 inches in height. It can also be found in pink and deep red colors.
Egyptian Starcluster pentas is a woody flowering shrub that produces various shades of red, pink, and white blossoms. They enjoy warm weather, attract butterflies, and grow to a height of 2 to 3 feet.
Whatever color, height, or foliage you are looking for to make your garden vibrant, chances are you’ll find exactly what you need in the broad variety of begonias and pentas available to enhance your lawn and garden.