The Q&A Archives: Purple Queen Bougainvillea

Question: We have a beautiful one of these and we are going to over winter it in the house as we live in the North.
1. We need to know how to prune it, both for height and width so it won't get too big for the house.
2. Do you recommend pruning the width? This is the first one of these plants we have of yours. When we bought it at Andersons several people told us that they have this plant and keep it in the house for winter.

Answer: Bougainvillea is tropical in nature so it will summer over in a sunny spot in your garden but will need to come indoors for the winter months. You'll want to begin acclimating it to growing indoors by taking it in overnight when outside nighttime temperatures reach about 50F. Take it back outside during the day and back in at night. Bring it in earlier and take it out later each day until it is residing indoors 24 hours a day. You'll want to reverse this process in the spring.

To keep your bougainvillea bushy and dense, pinch out the tips of the stems. Bougainvilleas bloom over a 6-week cycle, which means they will show color, then rest for a few weeks, then develop flowers and begin blooming about 6-weeks later.

Indoors, provide warmth and bright light; water when the top half-inch of soil begins to dry out.

Best wishes with your bougainvillea!

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