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May 4, 2018 4:57 AM CST
RI (Zone 6a)
I acquired a bougainvillea on Sunday from a local greenhouse. Within a couple of days, the edges of some of the mature leaves are starting to darken, dry and curl. The rest of the plant looks great, I am letting it dry out to a slight wilt between waterings, but it seems each time I water it more leaves become damaged. We don't have any full sun south facing windows, so the plant is in a southeast facing window. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. The plant is currently my only indoor plant, it does not have any sign of parasites.
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May 4, 2018 5:17 AM CST
Name: Big Bill
Livonia Michigan (Zone 6a)
GROW ORCHIDS!!!
Bee Lover Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Orchids Region: Michigan Hostas Growing under artificial light
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Bougainvillaa need sunlight! I think that what you are seeing are leaves falling due to a lack of good light. I do not think that you can make it happy indoors.
In Florida where I recently spent 9 years they grew beautifully through the dry season and rainy season. But always in good light.
I am unsure if they can survive a winter in Rhode Island. Probably not.
Taught classes on Orchids and Orchid growing and led hundreds of bird walks. Retired Wildlife Biologist.
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May 4, 2018 6:04 AM CST
RI (Zone 6a)
Thanks Bill. I can put it outdoors tomorrow and see if that's better. The local greenhouse where it came from has massive bougainvillea that are in bloom all year round, and workers at the greenhouse were confident it would do well in my home.

It also needs to be repotted, I don't want to shock it - what do you think of repotting then moving it outdoors simultaneously?

Thanks again. Are there any members here who have had luck with bougainvillea indoors in New England?
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May 4, 2018 6:41 AM CST
Name: Big Bill
Livonia Michigan (Zone 6a)
GROW ORCHIDS!!!
Bee Lover Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Orchids Region: Michigan Hostas Growing under artificial light
Echinacea Critters Allowed Cat Lover Butterflies Birds Region: United States of America
They are hardy in zones 9-11.
And you are in Zone 6 I think. You'll have to bring it inside.
They bloom best in full sun, unpruned and rangy. Kind of like forsythia up North.
Taught classes on Orchids and Orchid growing and led hundreds of bird walks. Retired Wildlife Biologist.
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May 4, 2018 6:59 PM CST
Name: Carol
Santa Ana, ca
Sunset zone 22, USDA zone 10 A.
Bookworm Charter ATP Member Region: California Hummingbirder Orchids Plant Identifier
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
Bougainvillea are notorious for being picky about having their roots disturbed, so wait until it has acclimated to it's new home to repot. If it does ok outside for the summer, wait to repot until next spring. Being a Mediterranean plant , they don't like wet feet, so make sure it has porous medium for good drainage. Keeping it alive in a south east window will be a challenge compared to a climate controlled green house.
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May 5, 2018 9:10 AM CST
RI (Zone 6a)
Thanks for the help! Moved the bougainvillea outside to our cold frames where it's protected from the wind, trying to replicate its previous greenhouse home as I wait for consistently great weather for it to live outside. It's looking much happier already.
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