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Begonias: Cultivation, Identification and Natural History Hardcover – 15 Nov 2005


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Timber Press (15 Nov 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0881927333
  • ISBN-13: 978-0881927337
  • Product Dimensions: 2.9 x 19.4 x 23.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 547,047 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By christopher clayton on 24 Feb 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is a distillation of tremendous in-depth knowledge on the subject of the very many begonia species. However it is written in such a way as to be accessible to non botanists such as myself. There are a couple of easy introductory chapters, then descriptions of many species. These descriptions start a bit formidably with taxonomic notes but then branch into discussion which is easy to follow, for me, an engineer, at any rate. There is however a nice pictorial description of the taxonomic terms at the end of the book which is a great help. I would humbly suggest to the author that this would be even better if it could be extended to cover all the terms used (about 80% at the moment) as this would help the non-specialists. I have a number of begonia seedlings sitting on my kitchen window (expensive to propagate from seed because of temperature air and soil requirements) and this book has served to really interest me in the different species. I cross checked on the American Society's web site (given in the book) and looked at their extensive seed list. I found nearly all discussed in the book (not quite 100%) but of course very many in the book which were not available on the Society's seed bank. If you like Begonias or know someone who does then buy this book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 10 reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Text Reference on Begonias 15 Jan 2006
By S. Casaurang - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I would give this book top rating if I had had a scientific interest in the history of begonias. I bought it thinking it would have a lot of practical cultivation and propogation tips and it disappointed me in that respect. It's a very thoroughly written and documented botanist's book - not really targeting the home gardener.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Excellent look at the Begonia family 1 Dec 2006
By Jane of Upton - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I found this text to be very useful. The scientific classifications, including leaf shape, texture, stem placment and flower formation were introduced in an approachable and engaging manner. The section on pests and diseases that are problems for begonias was very useful. Learning the origin and natural habitat of various begonias really helps with their successful cultivation. I did not find the more scientific aspects offputting at all. The text is written in a way that I found very appealing, and the large number of color photographs make it visually rich. This is a very thorough and appealing look at the amazingly diverse begonia family.

I would recommend this to anyone who wants to become more familiar with this fascinating plant family. For those of us with an acknowledged interest (ie, member of the American Begonia Society here) this book is a real treasure.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Good species begonia book 19 May 2008
By S. Adams - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Great reference for species begonias. Probably more information than the average begonia grower will every use. I was hoping it would include more information on hybrids. Good information about culture and care.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
The Right Stuff 15 Mar 2012
By L. J. Mounger - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Mark Tebbitt has written an excellent "manual" for those of us who enjoy growing begonias. His remarks about the hundred or so species and cultivars he has concentrated on are very succinct and helpful. His advise to growers spot on.If I had any quibble about the book, it would be that it ...isn't long enough! I wish he could have talked about many more of the hundreds of species in this very varied genus. And again, as many beautiful photographs. I have never understood why begonias are not more popular as, unlike African violets, say, they are so much more varied in form, habit, flowering and size. With begonias, there is something for every hobby grower and gardener--and artist as well, if truth be known.
Kit Jeans Mounger
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
a good basic reference 10 Feb 2010
By Emmit W. Stewart - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book because I wanted a good view of the different divisions within the genus begonia. My other Begonia book was written as an introduction to the genus and served its purpose very well, but was not written with a view of the scientific nomenclature. The genus begonia is huge and can be divided up into over forty sections. I wanted some sort of description of these sections, since they show up often in the begonian (official magazine of the American Begonia Society). Also, since my old book was written during the early sixties, it does not mention many of the exciting species introduced over the last forty years.
This book fills in many spaces in my knowledge of the genus and, since the author is a botanist, the book gives an excellent overview of the species and divisions within the group as well as showing the influence of the different species in many of the most popular hybrids.
In addition, the book is well written and is easy to read. Many books with this much technical information can be dry and laborous reading. I found this book to be very easy to read and understand. If you have an interest in Begonias I really think that this book is for you.
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