Help my bougainvillea, please

Discussion in 'Vines and Climbers' started by sungodess134, Jan 23, 2009.

  1. sungodess134

    sungodess134 Active Member

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    Location:
    Port St. Lucie, FL
    I live in S. Fla., this week we have been having unusually low 30 degree weather at night. My bougainvillea will be 2 years, this summer, in the ground. Lately it has been very healthy and vibrant, blooming as well. Since the cold snap it is very wilty, and has turned a very dark shade of green. We will be having our normal 60 degree at night, high 70's during the day for the next week or so. Does anyone have a suggestion for me? Any advice is greatly appreciated and anxiously awaited. thanks.
     
  2. Dave-Florida

    Dave-Florida Active Member

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    Location:
    Vero Beach, Fla., USA
    I haven't checked around the neighborhood to see how the bougainvilleas are doing.

    You must have suffered sub-freezing temperatures and/or frost (we had about 9 hours of temperatures hovering around 32 degrees, then a short drop to 30).

    I'd wait a week or so before removing any obviously dead parts of your plant, and until late February before doing any major trimming. I expect that your plant will regrow readily and will look fine in a few weeks. Bougainvilleas seem to thrive on dry sand with no irrigation (and they definitely flower best in dry weather), so I would avoid any temptation to give the plant extra water. By the way, Gardenfest in Vero Beach's Riverside Park next weekend is likely to have a specialist bougainvillea nursery.

    http://okeechobee.ifas.ufl.edu/News columns/Bougainvillea.htm
     
  3. sungodess134

    sungodess134 Active Member

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    Thanks so much Dave. I was tempted to go out and trim it up today to try and save what was healthy, but the whole thing looks awful. I will give it a week or so and then mess with it.
    Thanks for the link as well, Vero is right up the road.
     
  4. K Baron

    K Baron Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    North Vancouver, B.C., Canada
    Give it many weeks to recover. I have had major damage to mine at barely frost conditions, and it took 8 months to recover... Your in the subtropics so the turn around time may be much less.... do not touch or trim anything until you see new growth!
     
  5. Dave-Florida

    Dave-Florida Active Member

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    Location:
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    It was a pleasure to point out that bougainvilleas are really pretty tough under Florida conditions, if they're kept reasonably dry. They can be labors of love elsewhere. One nice aspect is that new varieties seem to be introduced regularly, and I suspect a lot of them are suitable for growing in small containers.
     
  6. lpettis1

    lpettis1 Member

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    Location:
    Ocoee, FL USA
    Bougainvillea is a hardy plant. I have around 5 plants and have had them in containers for almost 5 years. They seem to die back and do come back from being frost bitten. Just wait for spring to see how many branches have new life and cut back the ones that don't. They do no like to be watered too much. They will bloom more when it is dry and hot.
     

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