Bougainville climbing vine

Discussion in 'Vines and Climbers' started by phyllio12, Oct 14, 2007.

  1. phyllio12

    phyllio12 Member

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    Our neighbour built a lovely Trellis in the backyard this summer, we planted a Bougainville vine to climb the trellis, so far it still has a few blooms on it. What kind of care does it need over the winter months? should we cover the base with burlap or leaves? or can we just leave it the way it is?? many thanks..
     
  2. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    I don't think you can leave it the way it is - Bougainvillea is not hardy here.

    Best to transplant it into a container (and have the container be a permanent home for it), then bring it inside for the winter in a coolish place with low-light (the garage?).
     
  3. jumbojimmy

    jumbojimmy Active Member

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    In the winter months my bougainvillea drop all its leaves, but when spring arrives, it grows new sets of leaves. I guess bougainvillea is a deciduous climber. Even when I moved mine to the garage, mine still loose its leaves.

    Mine seem to be very slow to establish and is growing in a container. Is this common to all bougainvilleas?
     
  4. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Your experience sounds about right, from what I've read, jumbojimmy.
     
  5. jumbojimmy

    jumbojimmy Active Member

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    Daniel -

    how long does it take for a bougainvillea to cover/reach the height of a fence?

    This year I don't mine having no flowers, I want to promote leaf growth so that it will cover the fence. Will regular watering and fertilising help it to growth faster?

    I have a 1 year old rose, and seems to grow a lot faster than my bougainvillea.

    Secondly, is it OK to use an orchid mix? Somehow the maintenance of bougainvillea reminds me of an orchid in that they only like to be watered once a week.

    Looking forward to your reply.
     
  6. SUNRIZE

    SUNRIZE Active Member

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    I currently have 5 varieties (will try to get some pictures taken today) from my experience these plants want tons of sun. All mine are container grow and I water them like I do the rest of the plants during the summer. Last year I thought that I had to do the withholding water and using special blooming fertilizer to get them to bloom. It seems they bloom according to day length. All summer long they grow like crazy, and then when fall arrives they start blooming or at least that’s how it works here in Florida.
     
  7. phyllio12

    phyllio12 Member

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    Many thanks for your help, unfortunately, I had to dig mine up and put it into a warmer place for the winter months (Victoria BC) gets chilly sometimes....my plan is to keep it in a container for next season & hope for the best, it's such a beautiful vine. Thanks again.
     
  8. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    I managed to kill mine up at 800 feet above sea level (too cool) yet down in the suburbs [Melbourne] they grow like weeds.. I have a friend who is doing topiary with his and saw the most wonderful scarlet ball today.

    Liz
     
  9. SUNRIZE

    SUNRIZE Active Member

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    Hi Liz,

    Can you get a picture?
     
  10. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Sorry no pic till I get the elusive camera. Don't have a mobile phone either (Luddite) Re the ball he created it, I think out of two hanging baskets and some how fixed them on top of a pole. The plant is in a pot (has a very small garden) and it is grown up into the ball then clipped just like topiary. He has just made me a lovely bird out of a dutch privet again using wire frames and the bonsai wire stuff. It is slowly filling out. My privet hedge sculptures consist of balls in one case about 4 foot high and five graduating balls. It's great fun to do.

    Liz
     
  11. Olafhenny

    Olafhenny Active Member 10 Years

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    I have my bougainvilleas planted in big pots and take them inside during winter. They are reputed to withstand up to minus 5^C (23F). I give them only min. amount of water, while they are supposed to rest, but like toddlers, they do not do so well at it. They have already sprouted 10” long shoots, even though they are located below a small window on the north side. In the next few days I will move them near a large southern patio door and late April outdoors. That is, when it gets tricky. I have had in the previous two years problems with leaves drying out and getting spotty, when suddenly exposed to southerly sun and dry wind. This year I will try two things: Cut back much of the leafy new grows and cover them with clear plastic bags, which I will slowly pull up over time, to prevent excessive evapotranspiration and get the plant gradually used to the hot, dry air.

    I strongly suspect, that bougainvillea does not necessarily equal bougainvillea. In Mexico and Thailand they have the same basic shape as, say, a lilac bush. In Turkey the bed & breakfast places along the Aegaen and Mediterranean coasts often have a roof garden on the 5th floor. They plant their bougainvilleas on the ground beside the building and let them grow up, dragging them higher with (a) rope(s) as they grow, until they can cover a roof gazebo with them on the fifth floor.

    In Vietnam, we stayed last winter in a small resort with incredible landscaping including dozens of potted bougainvilleas, all “manicured” bonsai style. That is, what I am trying now to emulate*. For those I have pictures available. If somebody is interested, I will post them here; sorry not for the Turkish climbers, but we will be again in this incredibly beautiful and interesting area in September, and then I will attempt to get a picture of such a Turkish bougainvillea, - not easy considering the height of those things and rarely enough room to step back far enough to get the whole thing.

    *That is also the reason why, thus trimmed down, I may be able to get them covered with large, clear plastic bags.
     
  12. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    You might also get sunburned or cooked leaves with the clear plastic bags. Bit like a toddler in the car on a hot day. If you are going to use the plastic make a largish wire tube (chicken mesh) cover that with your plastic and place over plants. Keep the plastic well away from the plants and the top open to let the heat out. It will still have enough warmth with out the cooking factor. You could also whitewash the plastic as they used to the old glass houses. In it's natural place the plants easily climb to the 5th floor height. Here they tend to climb along fences and over garages and up trees and hedges. I am refering to the old fashioned purple and red ones.

    Liz
     
  13. Olafhenny

    Olafhenny Active Member 10 Years

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    Thank you, Liz, good advice. I will keep that in mind, when I move them out.
     
  14. lorax

    lorax Rising Contributor 10 Years

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    Down here, bouganvilla are either topiary or climbers, and it depends on how you train them when they're young; we have a full range of colours from flaming red right through to salmon (my fave), yellow, white, pink, fuschia, and variegated varieties, and a full range of bloom sizes from dwarf to gigantic. Here, people tend to let them go up the house, invade the trees, or cover the walls, although I have seen them trained into privacy hedges as well...

    You're absoultely right, Sunrize, blooming is a function of day length for them; they're normally a tropics plant, and they bloom when light and dark are balanced. This said, my bougs along with everybody else's here in Ecuador are constantly in bloom.

    However, Olaf, they're not gonna survive your winter. Liz' advice is terrific.
     
  15. Olafhenny

    Olafhenny Active Member 10 Years

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    Of course, that is why my (2) bougainvilleas are now inside and why I will heed Liz's advise, when I take them outside in April.

    That is also, why I opted for the bonsai style approach, which I have seen in Mui Ne, Vietnam. By keeping the plants contained in size, I can get them through the doors. ;)
     
  16. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Olaf it is actualy one of my Vietnamese friend's father who does the topiary work with them. He is the owner of the red ball and today I noticed his varigated one that he has trained into a map of Vietnam is in full flower. They really do look lovely in his fairly small suburban garden. Around here if they will grow I would like to see runaway for it's dramatic effect :). By the way it is early autumn here and they are still flowering well.
    Liz
     
  17. Olafhenny

    Olafhenny Active Member 10 Years

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    Hi Liz:
    I love all the gardening in South East Asia and try to incorporate much of their styles in my garden - in my own comparatively clumsy way. The people in Mui Ne were masters in keeping the leave production of their bougainvilleas down and the floral splendour to a maximum. I believe, that they accomplish that by keeping the soil in their planters very lean. When I came back I repotted mine in very lean soil and that seemed to have worked. Unfortunately I have not been able to get hold of the gardener in Mui Ne for his advice. :(
    Mine keep on blooming until I bring them in when the temperature is expected to go below -3^C (27^F)
     
  18. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Next time I am down for I will ask him how he does it. That is mass of flowers. You seem to be going well maybe I will have to do container growing and move them in for winter onto a verandah. For some reason I have killed two. I get cool in winter but not freezing

    I did have to help him with the Wisteria tho. Could not work out why it was not flowering. Learned on this list that seed raised plants take about 7 years and that is what he had. So he added one from my hairdo in the wind (wisteria) runners and presto 2 yrs later he has a nice flowering topiary type tree that will be great when matured.

    Liz
     
  19. Olafhenny

    Olafhenny Active Member 10 Years

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    "Next time I am down for I will ask him how he does it." That would be great, Liz. Be sure to let me know what he says, I need all the help I can get.

    My main problem appears to be moving them out again in spring. When I put them into a bright indoor location they sprout a lot of leaves and the plants look perfectly healthy. Then, when I move them out into sun and wind they develop dry spots in the leaves and some leaves fall off completely. So this spring I will prune much of the greenery back before moving them out and try to keep them in the shade as much as available.

    "For some reason I have killed two. I get cool in winter but not freezing" I don't think cold temps are the reason though. They get light frost in many of the regions, where the proliferate and I understand, that they are rated to -5^C. I suspect, that rich, heavy, well fertilized soil does bougainvilleas more harm than good. The people in Vietnam seemed to have mostly sandy silty soil in their pots.
     
  20. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    I am about to go down and see him to take some work. will get back in a few hrs

    Re soil I think you could be right. Mine is a very deep rich volcanic soil. Down where he is it is some of the old sand dune type country around the bay.

    Liz
     
  21. lorax

    lorax Rising Contributor 10 Years

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    They grow in the absolute worst soils here; in fact they're one of the only things that will grow after the eucalypts are cleared or the soil has been used extensively by cane growers. The nicest ones I have ever seen were growing in volcanic sand where the only other things surviving were cacti and agaves.
     

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