This is probably the easiest Gobenia (also known as Goo-bernias, for their tendency to melt…) to grow in the terrarium. It also handles being moved better than most from this group. Once established, it grows rather quickly. The leaves on this species are between .5-1 inch wide and long, and the stems are a pretty light pink/red. It will grow well over a well drained substrate, creating a dense mat, or it will grow up a vertical surface (usually stays […]
This was a Gesneriad show purchase, and unfortunately this one didn’t come with an ID. It is not surprisingly very easy to grow and propagate, and seems to stay an appropriate size to use in even smaller vivariums. The leaves only reach about 2″, and the growth habit is such that it will ramble as much as you let it, but it’s root structure is rather ill formed (at least in humid terraria) so it is very easy to cut […]
This Brazilian hybrid has dramatic leaf green leaf venation, cast against a darker green (or red if new growth) foliage. It is easy to keep and is a rhizomatous species. The name ‘sole-mutata’ means sun changing, as it’s leaves will vary their color depending on how much light it is receiving. It does well as a house plant as well as a terrarium plant, and depending on conditions reaches about 12-18″ in diameter, and half as tall.
There are a few forms of B.ningmingensis, and they all look drastically different to my eyes. The dark form seems to be very hardy and fast growing, and it flowers all the time. Leaves are a velvety dark green, with newer growth being lighter green. It is a newer species from China that grows to about 10″. It will often grow very close to the substrate, especially at first, forming a little tented area on the substrate.
Another incredible new species from limestone regions of Southwest China, Begonia ferox is similar in appearance to Begonia melanobullata, except that the cones (bullae) appear gradually as the plant matures, with new leaves coming out a flat green. As mature plants they look very similar. Each bullae has a white hair coming out of the tip, which eventually fall off (another difference between ferox and melanobullata). So far it has been an easy to grow and propagate species, and the […]
According to Dave’s Garden, this Begonia is hardy down to 10F! I’d be a little afraid to test that out, but anything close to that is pretty impressive for a species that also does excellent in warm terrariums. It is a rhizomatous species that can grow to 18″ tall, but has a tendency towards rambling in a terrarium, with a more horizontal spread. The leaves only grow to about 3″ and are spiraled with undulating edges. The leaves are velvety […]
A holy grail species, newly described from Sarawak (where all the good ones seem to come from…), is also an excellent terrarium subject, growing to only 8″ tall when mature. It is covered in bristly magenta hairs and the underlying leaf color is a similar bright magenta-red. Flowers are bright white. This species can be temperamental, and when first acclimating, prefers if it’s leaves are not touching glass or other surfaces as the leaves are prone to melting. Overall though, […]
If you are looking for a Begonia species that has it all for terrarium culture, this is an excellent choice. It is a small growing, compact species that is easy to keep and propagate, and has beautiful foliage (even the backsides of the leaves are something to marval at). It is a Rhizomatous species native to Central China. “Leslie Woodriff called it the “Fairy Carpet” begonia because of the velvety appearance of its dark green leaves, frosted with silver and […]
A native of Southern China and Indo-China, this Begonia can grow to over a foot tall, with leaves staying around 4-5″. It is very easy to keep small in the terrarium however, and seems to be a slower growing, albeit not too difficult, species. The stems are a striking red and the white spotting on foliage becomes even more prominent as the plant matures.