Bougainvillea's Not Flowring - Knowledgebase Question

Fountain Valley, CA
Question by jgemme
September 27, 1998
I have bougainvilla growing on trellis in my backyard. Last year they flowered beautifully all summer long. This year they have not even flowered once. I have fertilized in the spring and have taken good care. What could be going on?


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Answer from NGA
September 27, 1998

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If a Bougainvillea gets too much water in the summer, it may refuse to bloom. It needs to be stressed a bit from mid-summer until fall to produce the best show. Flowers (actually colored bracts) develop on the ends of new stems that grow from older, woody stems. You can encourage blossoming next year by pinching back the tips of long stems in the early summer, or by pruning back some of the older stems in the spring when plant growth is most vigorous.

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