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BOUGAINVILLEA 'Scarlet O'Hara'

Image of Bougainvillea 'Scarlet O'Hara'

Maureen Gilmer

Family

Nyctaginaceae

Botanical Name

BOUGAINVILLEA 'Scarlet O'Hara'

Plant Common Name

Bougainvillea, Scarlet O'Hara Bougainvillea

General Description

This vivid, bright-red,hybrid bougainvillea is a huge climber that bestows a profusion of the famous tropical bloom to frost-free gardens. Bougainvillea is a hallmark of Mexico and California but can be found thriving in warm climates around the world. The parent species of ‘Scarlet O’Hara’ are native to South America where various colors and forms were bred early on to create our garden varieties. A woody vine-like plant, ‘Scarlet O’Hara’ produces long arching branches decked with dark green leaves.

This plant is a heavy bloomer and capable of reblooming year round in mild climates. Excessive litter can result when the current flush of bloom withers and drops.The color is not from a flower but from bracts, which are modified leaves and thus far more plentiful and showy than the tiny tubular flowers among them. The true flowers are pollinated by hummingbirds and long-tongued insects, a bonus in the eyes of many gardeners. It thrivs in well-drained soils and very warm climates. Like most bougainvilleas, ‘Scarlet O’Hara’ blooms far more heavily when conditions are dry. If over-watered, even in the desert, it will grow leafy and show insufficient color. It produces a large fibrous root system that resents disturbance, so when planting a nursery purchase, keep the rootball intact. This is among the best of climbers for walls, fences, arbors, shade structures, gazebos, and even thrives climbing onto roofs and into tree tops.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    9 - 11

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 5, 6, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Vine/Liana

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    20'-30' / 6.1m - 9.1m

  • Bloom Time

    Indeterminate

  • Native To

    Hybrid Origin, South America

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Salt

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Xeric/Desert, Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Vining/Climbing

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Red

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Dark Green

  • Bark Color

    Tan

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Feature Plant, Rock Garden / Wall, Tropical, Vine

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    Yes

  • Invasive

    Sometimes

  • Attracts

    Hummingbirds

  • Self-Sowing

    No