Bougainvillea sp.

I’m on vacation, and I think this will be the last, and admittedly very short, entry I can post for February. The next one will likely be on Monday, March 2. — Daniel.

This is a different plant than the one photographed in San Miguel de Allende by David Tarrant two years ago (see: Bougainvillea glabra (unknown selection), and I’m afraid I don’t know Bougainvillea well enough to make an educated guess as to what this species or (more likely) cultivar may be. Feel free to take a stab at identifying it, if you like, and I can perhaps follow up in the comments with more information early next week if its identification can be determined.

Bougainvillea sp.

21 responses to “Bougainvillea sp.”

  1. Stephan Bartel

    Is this a type of rotadendrum?
    I saw a lot of these when I was in Argentina and all the locals would cut them down. I found that the bark was rather brittle. (I could easily collect some under my nails without trying very hard) The ones I saw were in the wild.

  2. Kannan

    A very common plant everywhere in India and cultivated as ornamental. NBRI, Lucknow, India has 100’s of varieties.

  3. Barbara with a T

    We have bouganvilla here in South Texas, and it is absolutely gorgeous. I love that color that you have shown us today. I had bought a plant and had just put it in the ground, it had a few blooms on it, and that is when hurricane IKE took it completely away! I will get another one later on. That is my absolute favorite plant, aside from Hibiscus. Thanks for the information. I was surprised to see that India has bouganvilla, as one of your readers stated.

  4. Quin

    In the S.F. Bay Area this is a welcome climber or free standing shrub of many color possibilities. The purple sp. B.spectabilis is the most frost hardy. The lighter and softer colors of various cvs. are not nearly so cold resistant sometimes being frozen all the way to the ground or even killed completely. Roots are very delicate during planting or transplanting operations.

  5. SoapySophia

    that is so cute. it looks especially striking up next to the moss green wall. amazing as usual, Daniel!

  6. elizabeth a airhart

    florida is covered with this
    wonderful plant i love it growing
    on the roof tops and on fences
    covering walls not sure what
    plant you have
    i hope someone waters the plants
    thank you

  7. Jacqueline

    This shrub is very commonplace here in Jamaica. It comes in every imaginable colour (except black), and does really well in the warmth – no surprise there that it didn’t last in the cold. It is an ornamental plant, doesn’t require much care, and will easily take over an entire space if it is not regularly pruned. Beautiful!

  8. carmen

    As a commenter pointed out it is common here in the San Francisco area. In dry hilly areas it can be a magnificent groundcover.

  9. Dana

    We have a grower here in Oklahoma that sells Bouganvilleas in hanging baskets. He told a group of Master Gardeners “Once you get the trick to it, these are easy to overwinter.” Several MGs agreed saying they had tried a couple of times and finally figured out how to overwinter them. Apparently an easy care plant if you get the gist of its idiosyncrasies.

  10. Lynne

    They were all over the place in Cancun and Puerto Vallarta too, when we vacationed there. The photo above doesn’t do justice to the blazes of color bougainvillea can produce. It can produce so many “flowers” (I know the brightly colored parts aren’t flowers but don’t know what the correct term is) that the foliage is hardly visible at times. Stunning.

  11. Connie

    Thanks for the great pictures- have fun on the rest of your vacation. And thanks also for the links which eventually led me to Jeanne Baret- an 18th explorer, the first European woman to circumnagigat the earth. She apparently was a botanist and was in on the discovery of Bouganvillea

  12. Roberta

    The first time I saw bouganvillea was in Northern Queensland, Australia, and it knocked my flip-flops off! It is very common here in Tucson, even though it requires more water than natives and needs to be covered when it drops below freezing. This photo looks like the Barbara Karsh variety– a hot pink/magenta that is the most popular. I also have a purple Bouganvillea that doesn’t seem to grow as tall. The brightly-coloured flowers are actually leaves and leave a lot of litter when they dry out and fall off.

  13. Eric Simpson

    Bougainvillea is a common ornamental here in north coastal San Diego County, but you have to keep an eye on it… it likes it here a bit too much. I know of several instances where it was allowed to grow onto the roof of a house, and eventually caused the roof to collapse through a combination of the plant’s weight, and the decay of the roof caused by the natural composting of material built up at the plant/roof boundary.
    My favorite plant locally was one that grew 60 feet up into the canopy of a large pine tree, and did so well it eventually outmassed the tree!

  14. Hollis

    a compositional masterpiece, at least to my eye … was it intended as such? I love the arrangement and colors. it’s now my wallpaper and looks great on the monitor

  15. Apreet Sandhu

    Thanks for reminding me of this beautiful plant!
    I’m from Punjab,India.I have seen this plant in many colours.Some varieties bear single bracts and some bear double bracted dense flowers ,mostly on the terminal ends of branches.Easy to propagate by cuttings.Does very well as a pot bound plant,you just need to train it for its shape.To get uniform flush of flowering,try inducing water stress to the new vegetative growth!

  16. Donald DeLano

    I can agree with Roberta, but I believe it is spelled Bougainvillea ‘Barbara Karst’.

  17. naive

    Bougainvilla grows well in the south, likes to be a little dry. I use the let wilt, then water technique for best blooming. Plant will lose color with too much water, but will have gorgeous foliage. A little more than too much water will cause it to lose green leaves as well. Colors range from gold through deepest crimson. Pinch back to encourage color bracts, color only shows on new growth. Great xeriphitic color and does not mind terrible soil conditions.

  18. Lorax

    I’d say ‘Barbara Karst’ as well – it’s the cultivar that’s grown here in Ecuador especially for the bracts, which are one of 42 ingredients in the herbal tea “Horchata.” This specimen is a really neat example – if the gardener tends it well, s/he will be able to espalier it up that wall until none of the plaster is visible.

  19. Daniel Mosquin

    Hollis, yes, the composition was intentional. It’s pretty rare that I take a photo that isn’t intentionally composed, though it does happen — photos from a moving car, for example!

  20. coffey

    how do you prune this species, we have had difficulty and the plant is very unhealthy and frail with few blossoms and dead wood.

  21. Shirley

    The bougainvillea was discovered in Brazil, Rio de Janiero in July of 1767. This is a very popular plant in Brazil. You can find it in red, orange, yellow, pink, white, purple, scarlet and lavender everywhere in northeast of Brazil (Recife, Natal, Maceio, Fortaleza, Joao Pessoa).

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