Caring for Bougainvillea Flowers

Overview

The bougainvillea flower is actually a woody evergreen vine that comes from the family Nyctaginaceae. It is commonly referred to at the paper flower because it has three bracts that look like paper. These bracts surround the actual flower. The bougainvillea vine can grow as tall as 3 to 4 feet. Bougainvillas require very little care and are relatively pest-free.

Step 1

Plant your bougainvillea in an area with well-draining soil. Bougainvilleas can tolerate a wide range of soils as long as they drain properly.

Step 2

Prune nearby trees or other plants to ensure your bougainvillea flowers are receiving a minimum of five hours of full sunlight per day.

Step 3

Water your bougainvillea so that the soil stays moist. Soil should not be sopping wet, as this can cause root rot, but bougainvilleas will suffer if the soil is allowed to dry out.

Step 4

Feed your bougainvillea once per month. Bougainvilleas are considered heavy feeders. A good fertilizer to use is a 21-5-20 fertilizer that is diluted to half strength.

Step 5

Watch for the cabbage looper and the aphid. Cabbage looper larvae are small green worms that eat holes through leaves. Aphids are tiny pear-shaped insects that suck sap from plants, making leaves turn yellow and eventually dry out and wilt. If you find either of these pests spray them with horticultural oil, or neem oil. Aside from these two pests, bougainvillea is generally pest-free.

Things You'll Need

  • Fertilizer
  • Horticultural oil
  • Neem oil

References

  • FloriData: Bougainvillea Spp.
  • Plant Care: Bougainvillea Plant Care
  • Texas A&M University: Growing Bougainvilleas
Keywords: bougainvillea, Bougainvillea care, caring for bougainvilleas, bougainvillea flower care

About this Author

Alicia Bodine has been a professional writer for six years. She has produced thousands of articles for online publications such as Demand Studios, Bright Hub, Associated Content and WiseGeek. Bodine is also the current cooking guru for LifeTips. She has received awards for being a top content producer.