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BOUGAINVILLEA spectabilis

Image of Bougainvillea spectabilis

Forest & Kim Starr

Family

Nyctaginaceae

Botanical Name

BOUGAINVILLEA spectabilis

Plant Common Name

Great Bougainvillea

General Description

Showy bougainvillea is a vigorous, woody, climber with curving thorns and soft, green leaves with hairy undersides. Stems are also hairy. Breathtaking and abundant colorful clusters of pink or purple bracts appear seasonally, triggered by a cold temperature regime or, most consistently, during the dry season. Bougainvillea is typically a large plant with an open habit that requires pruning.

Plant in full sun and fertile, well-drained garden soil. Showy bougainvillea makes a colorful accent on walls or pergolas, trained as espalier and may be planted as an annual in hanging baskets or other large containers.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    9 - 11

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Shrub

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun

  • Height

    22'-40' / 6.7m - 12.2m

  • Width

    15'-30' / 4.6m - 9.1m

  • Bloom Time

    Indeterminate

  • Native To

    Brazil

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Fast

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Vining/Climbing

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Purple, Pink

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Light Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Light Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Light Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Light Green

  • Bark Color

    Tan, Gray

  • 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

    Semi-Evergreen

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Container, Feature Plant, Hanging Basket, Rock Garden / Wall, Topiary / Bonsai / Espalier, Tropical, Vine

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    Yes

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No