If you have ever wandered around the small alleyways and streets of the Greek Islands in summer or have visited Europe in the warmer months you would know the true beauty of Bougainvilleas (Bougainvillea cvs). These hardy scrambling climbers are very easy to grow and suit our warm temperate climate. Great to add colour to any wall or terrace, or to have as a ground cover or small shrub. 

How to grow bougainvilleas in your garden

  1. Choose a well drained spot in the garden that attracts full sun.
  2. Enrich the soil in the planting bed with some compost and Yates Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver & Plant Fertiliser before planting.
  3. Dig the planting hole twice as wide and to the same depth as the root-ball. Remove the plant from the container, gently tease the roots.
  4. Position in hole and backfill with soil, gently firming down. Form a raised or doughnut shaped ring of soil around the outer edge of the plant's root zone. This helps keep water where it's needed.  Always water in well after planting to settle the soil around the roots and keep the soil moist for several weeks while the new plant establishes.
  5. Mulch around the base with organic mulch like bark chips, sugarcane or pea straw, keeping it away from the base of the plant.
  6. Feed every 4 to 6 weeks with  Yates Thrive Roses & Flowers Liquid Plant Food.


How to grow bougainvilleas in a pot

  1. Choose a pot at least 600mm wide. Position in full sun and fill with quality potting mix, such as Yates Potting Mix with Dynamic Lifter
  2. Remove the plant from the container, gently tease the roots.
  3. Position in hole and backfill with potting mix, gently firming down. Water in well.
  4. Feed every 4 to 6 weeks with Yates Thrive Roses & Flowers Liquid Plant Food.

Growing tips

  • Bougainvillea don’t like getting wet feet so avoid overwatering. Excessive water can cause the leaves to drop from the plant.
  • Ensure that you provide the plant with plenty of support to grow and train. These plants are scrambling climbers and may need additional support.
  • Bougainvilleas are salt tolerant and can handle direct or in-direct salt winds.
  • Lightly prune back plants once flowering has finished.
  • Bougainvilleas can respond well to a hard prune but only do this if it is absolutely necessary as they respond better to light regular pruning.
  • Watch out for those spikes! Wear gloves and long sleeved shirts and pants if trimming or training these plants.
  • Bougainvilleas can be propagated from hardwood cuttings
  • Dwarf varieties such as Bambino Bougs are available. These varieties are compact, have a small shrub like habit. 

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