Although beautiful and sturdy, our introduction to the Bougainvillea was not a pleasant one. Michael and I both have not-so-fond memories of being scratched and poked by long, sharp thorns. Michael even had the pleasure of “taming” a wild Bougainvillea for a family member that left him needing band-aids and possible referral to an anger management class!
So, you will probably scratch your head in bewilderment when I tell you that we bought three for our own home! Are we gluttons for punishment and pain? Some may think so. However, what really happened was a trip to Bali and a chance to see how beautiful these plants can be (when properly maintained!).
Here are the (somewhat obvious and not-so-difficult) steps to take:
Purchase the following from your local nursery or home improvement store:
- your choice of Bougainvillea plants (note that they come in pretty shades pink, white, yellow and orange)
- pots for said plants
- Bougainvillea food
*Here are examples of the plants we bought.*
Return home and plant the plants. (Come on people, you know how to do this!)
Don’t forget to add the Bougainvillea Food!
You’re done … for a little while at least. After a few months your plants will out grow their trellis. When this happens you can buy a pre-made trellis like these …
… or you can buy the following supplies to make your own trellis:
- treated 1 1/2 x 1/2 pieces of wood
- nails and hammer (if you do not already own these tools)
(*You will need to do the math to determine how much wood you’ll need, based on the number and size of the Bougainvillea you have.)
You will also need to purchase plant tie backs to gently guide the direction of growth for your plants up their new trellis.
We now get to marvel at these beauties daily, a constant reminder of the lush gardens in Bali! They bloom a few times each year and do really (really) well with water and the Bougainvillea food! We love our little garden and piece of paradise in the suburban jungle of South Florida!
Update: We are bad plant parents. We did not transfer our growing bougainvillea to larger pots and pretty much strangled them! No bueno. Word to the wise – make sure you buy larger pots as your plants grow!