Ask a Question forum: Bougainvillea

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Gresham Oregon Willamette Vall
danokra
Nov 25, 2017 6:41 PM CST
I have had good success growing all types of cactus and now I want to try Bougainvillea. Where can I order some starts shipped to my Portland Oregon address. I have a greenhouse to give them a boost if needed and my yard is a micro climate for Southwest kinds of plants.
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Nov 25, 2017 7:35 PM CST
That's cool that you can grow them where you live. Can I suggest you look for dwarf varieties? There are also some small ones that would be suitable for hanging baskets. I had two in my GH: Bengal Orange and Raspberry Ice.

As all I had to do was go to the nursery and buy one (they were treated like annuals), I have no idea where to buy them but I did find this lady when I Googled the names of the plants I had:

https://www.etsy.com/listing/5...
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Nov 25, 2017 7:36 PM CST
They are a tropical, and can easily be killed by frost. Added to that, they are a rampant grower when happy, so greenhouse life wouldn't last very long. Heavy pruning can keep them reasonable size for awhile...depending on cultivar. I'm sure you could find a Ca. grower that would ship one to you, but probably not with a guarantee.
Mine was a hanging basket for the first year...
[Last edited by ctcarol - Nov 25, 2017 7:37 PM (+)]
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Gresham Oregon Willamette Vall
danokra
Nov 25, 2017 7:45 PM CST
Thank you. I have had to prune most of my cactus varieties every year or they grow to big and to tall. My chollas have gotten out of hand and grow like weeds every year. I am going to try bougs and see if i can make them survive.
Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
Charter ATP Member Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Orchids Region: California Plant Identifier
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ctcarol
Nov 25, 2017 7:53 PM CST
The challenge is half the fun! That being said, My hanging basket Is now being kept below the roofline by pruning about five times a year...with ladder. Sighing! You definitely want a "shrubby" type.
Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

Region: United States of America Deer Region: Florida Charter ATP Member Million Pollinator Garden Challenge I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Nov 25, 2017 10:51 PM CST
Garden Harvest Supply carries a few different colors in 2.5 inch pots for $8.00 but they won't ship until spring 2018: http://www.gardenharvestsupply...

The company come highly recommended, you can read member reviews here: GrowJoy
~ Playing in the dirt is my therapy ... and I'm in therapy a lot! ~


Name: Sue
SF Bay Area, CA (Zone 9b)
Container Gardener Canning and food preservation Dog Lover
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Zuni
Dec 15, 2017 1:59 AM CST
danokra said:I have had good success growing all types of cactus and now I want to try Bougainvillea. Where can I order some starts shipped to my Portland Oregon address. I have a greenhouse to give them a boost if needed and my yard is a micro climate for Southwest kinds of plants.


Did you ever get your bougainvilleas? I have one thriving on my balcony. It's evergreen here and has been continually blooming and we've been getting down into the 30's overnight, but warms up into the 60's during the day. I used to live in the White Salmon, WA, area, so I know your weather well. Lived there for nearly 20 years. Brrrr! LOL.

Anyway, if you want to try some seeds, I have just started collecting the bracts/flowers that fall. I've never collected seeds from them before, but if you want some for just postage, I'll send you some and you can see if you can get them to sprout.

Or wait for me to try to root some cuttings and send them when the weather isn't so cold up there?

The one I have is a pretty compact variety called Elizabeth Angus. It's been really hardy, but you'd probably have to put your bougainvilleas in containers and move them in the greenhouse over winter, though, in Portland. They have a reputation for not liking to be transplanted, but mine came around fairly quickly with good soil and food.

You can kind of see it in this photo on my balcony:

Thumb of 2017-12-15/Zuni/bea2db

I'll take a better photo of it and add it. Will try to do that tomorrow.

That photo was taken a few months ago, early morning (see my breakfast tacos? LOL) and now you can't see the terra cotta pot it's in, and it's covered in flowers again. It will be covered in flowers, then sometimes takes a little break, then flowers again - at least with the fertilizer I'm using (Bougain).

So, it's been slowly growing and filling out nicely since I bought it around June when it was pretty spindly. The photo above was taken around September. So, it's not a crazy grower that will overtake your yard by any means. I've had those before. Also, I've never pruned it. I just remove dead leaves/flowers.

And it had full sun, temps upwards of 100 degrees consistently for months over the summer, and recently it's been in the mid 30's at night. So, it's pretty darn hardy.

It's a darkish hot fuschia color. Leans more towards purple than pink. I just looked to see if there was a photo on this site, but there isn't for Elizabeth Angus, so I'll take a better close-up one and upload it to the database here, too.

Anyway, let me know if you want to experiment with some seeds or cuttings off my Elizabeth Angus bougainvillea. I lovingly call her Lizzy. Smiling I don't have room for much on my balcony, but if you wanted to trade for a few bulbs, I'd love that. Just planted some heirloom freesias. I just love the little heirlooms. They smell heavenly.
[Last edited by Zuni - Dec 15, 2017 2:07 AM (+)]
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Name: Sue
SF Bay Area, CA (Zone 9b)
Container Gardener Canning and food preservation Dog Lover
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Zuni
Dec 15, 2017 12:05 PM CST
Here are a couple more pics. The first is "Lizzy" after initially being transplanted into her new home, after rescuing her from Home Depot in June. The second one was taken this morning. So, you can see how compact she has stayed in 6 months, and I have done zero pruning. I just remove dead/yellow leaves and spent bracts/flowers. And I feed her monthly with Bougain. She's planted in Black Gold. Gets great light. So, this is just a nice compact variety.


Thumb of 2017-12-15/Zuni/5c38d9






As far as watering, I have figured out what she loves best. I just water her thoroughly until water pours out the bottom of her pot when she just starts to wilt. That depends on temperature. Sometimes she'll be wilty in the early morning after a really cold night now, but I wait to see if that's just from the cold. When it warms up, she perks back up.

When it's super hot in summer, the flushing of the water through her pot isn't enough to let her get a good drink, even though she loves soil that drains really well. They don't like wet feet. So, what I do then, is I have a plastic big vodka bottle - LOL - that I punched a hole in the cap, and I fill it up and put the top down into the soil, and it works like an olla, or water spike. It will slowly drip and keep the soil moist. Takes a few hours for it to empty. That way, she gets a good drink and the water doesn't just pass through too quickly.

In the winter now, though, I don't use the vodka bottle, as she doesn't need to get that wet now. You can't see the vodka bottle because of the foliage. What I do, is I use a little bungie cord to hold the vodka bottle upright and bungie it around the little bamboo stake that came with the plant, which is still in the pot. I'll try to take a pic of that, too.

They're pretty forgiving, though, and would probably come back even if they ended up all wilted. But, the olla/water spike technique is just so convenient. Just set it in the pot and let it slow drip. You could also just add it to a drip system. Just make sure it doesn't get soggy.

Oh, and don't forget these have thorns! When I wrestle with the vodka bottle, I need to be careful :-)
[Last edited by Zuni - Dec 15, 2017 12:22 PM (+)]
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Name: Sue
SF Bay Area, CA (Zone 9b)
Container Gardener Canning and food preservation Dog Lover
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Zuni
Dec 15, 2017 12:31 PM CST
Okay, here's my poor man's olla for the bougainvillea:


Thumb of 2017-12-15/Zuni/b1c90c

I'm going to buy some of the terra cotta water spikes on Amazon, though, because the hole in the cap on the vodka bottle can get clogged by the soil and then, the water stays in the bottle. So, I'm going to get a water spike, then put the upside down bottle into the spike. I'm going to go ahead and leave the cap on with the hole in it, so it drains slowly into the water spike.

I like that this method doesn't take up a lot of space in the pot, which ollas do in containers. This way, the plant gets more root space, but still the benefit of slow watering.
[Last edited by Zuni - Dec 15, 2017 12:32 PM (+)]
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