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Products > Begonia 'San Miguel'
Begonia 'San Miguel' - San Miguel Begonia
Image of Begonia 'San Miguel'
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Begoniaceae (Begonias)
Origin: South America
Evergreen: Yes
Red/Purple Foliage: Yes
Flower Color: White
Bloomtime: Summer/Fall
Synonyms: [B. 'Irene Tapia', Hort.]
Parentage: (B. venosa x B. scharffiana)
Height: 2-3 feet
Width: 2-3 feet
Exposure: Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 25-30 F
Begonia 'San Miguel' - A large hairy-leafed shrub-type begonia that grows to 2 to 3 feet tall by as wide with 5- to 10-inch-long leaves that are pale green on the upper surface and deep red below with both surfaces covered with white hairs. Petioles and young stems are also red. The flowers, which appear in summer through fall and linger into winter rise above the foliage on branching red stems and are white with a tinge of pink at the base.

Plant in shade in a well-drained organically rich soil and irrigate regularly. Hardy to about 28 F. A nice large begonia for the garden or in a large container.

This hybrid was created by Virgil E. Stark of San Diego, California in 1953 (some references say 1957) and was registered by the American Begonia Society as cultivar # 134 and listed as the result of crossing Begonia venosa with Begonia scharffiana. We received this plant unidentified from local Santa Barbara designer and gardener Barbara Siemon in 2000 and started selling it in 2007 under the name Begonia 'Irene Tapia', a Begonia scharffiana hybrid created by in 1977 by legendary begonia hybridizer Rudy Ziesenhenne (1911-2005). We thank Mike Flaherty of Gazebo Plants and Flowers, who corrected us on this identification in 2011, noting that Begonia 'San Miguel' has the distinct stipules from its Begonia venosa parent that makes our plant unmistakably this cultivar. Mike noted that he too received a cutting from Ms. Siemon and that Rudy Ziesenhenne himself identified it as Begonia 'San Miguel'. 

This information about Begonia 'San Miguel' displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.