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BEGONIA 'Black Mamba'

Image of Begonia 'Black Mamba'

Terra Nova Nurseries, Inc.

Family

Begoniaceae

Botanical Name

BEGONIA 'Black Mamba'

Plant Common Name

Begonia, Black Mamba Begonia

General Description

Both the foliage and flowers of ‘Black Mamba’ stand out, though it is most admired as a foliage plant. Its velvety, star-shaped leaves are nearly black with contrasting burgundy undersides, and in winter it produces a lovely display of pink flowers. This Terra Nova introduction was bred by Brad Thompson in 1993 as a cross between 'Peggy Frost' and 'Dr. Cleo.' It is a surprisingly vigorous, rhizomatous selection best-suited for container culture.

Each large leaf is star-like in appearance with many lobes and serrate edges. They appear along spreading rhizomes and are held upright, which gives the plant a crested look. Some may produce dark green to black foliage.

Grow 'Black Mamba' in a site with bright filtered light and moist, well-drained, acid to neutral soil. It makes a wonderful houseplant so long as it’s provided high humidity, to prevent leaf browning, and the soil is allowed to dry out slightly between watering. Outdoors it can be grown as a bedding plant for shade. In frost-free regions, 'Black Mamba' is a robust landscape plant that looks great planted among bromeliads and ferns.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 4

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    10 - 13

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Tender Perennial

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Shade, Full Shade

  • Height

    18"-24" / 45.7cm - 61.0cm

  • Width

    18"-24" / 45.7cm - 61.0cm

  • Bloom Time

    Winter, Late Winter

  • Native To

    Hybrid Origin

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Clump-Forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Pink

  • Fruit Color

    Tan

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Dark Green, Burgundy, Black

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green, Burgundy, Black

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Dark Green, Burgundy, Black

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Dark Green, Burgundy, Black

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Coarse

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Houseplant, Mixed Border, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    Yes

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No