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Hybrid Preservation

Preserving hybrids and Saving Species are really the right and left hands of the American Begonia Societies conservation efforts, and both are a fun way to learn more about begonias, and the history of these plants as well as the people who turned their skills to hybridizing begonias for the rest of us to enjoy.

As time goes by the hybrid begonias of yesterday are slowly replaced by the cultivars of today in a never ending process. The Hybrid Preservation Committee's purpose is to save the accomplishments of past hybridizers, because many of these begonias are 'one of a kind', the rare magic of one person's idea of a plant and what they created in search of it.

Unlike species which can be multiplied by seed, hybrids must be maintained by growing from cuttings, so the Hybrid Preservation Committee in cooperation with the Fort Worth Botanic Garden's Begonia Collection, collects cuttings of lost cultivars and grows, multiplies, and shares those cultivars back to the industry and the members of the American Begonia Society.

Each year we focus on a given hybridizer, and try to locate the key cultivars they created in personal collections and our members gardens. Cuttings are then brought in, propagated, and shared with the Fort Worth Botanic Garden's Begonia Collection, and from there to nurseries and begonia collectors.

If you have questions about a cultivar, or an old hybrid in your collection, or if you just want to help in the detective work of finding lost hybrids, contact the Hybrid Preservation Committee and let's work together!

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