Of Brazilian origins and with decorative virtues appreciated all over the world, Bouganville is a plant that can be easily grown in any region of Italy. The rules for its cultivation are very simple.
When to prune. Tips for correct execution
Like any plant, also the Bouganville (or Bouganvillea), which has a climbing and bushy habit, needs the ordinary operations related to pruning, so that the plant can breathe better, receive and absorb more light and therefore reinvigorate itself.
The best time to carry out this type of operation is autumn, so at the end of the flowering period of this splendid plant, but during the month of February we advise you to prune the branches that are weaker.
Bouganville has the characteristic of growing very fast compared to other plants.
It is therefore necessary to make significant cuts, especially if the growth, during the cold months of winter, was more consistent than usual. However, care must be taken to apply the metal wire on the shoots and not on the wood part, because the latter breaks very easily. In the bosai version, this plant assumes an erect posture, which represents an exception to its classic and natural climbing posture.
Where to grow it. The particularities of its flowers
It must be clarified that the flowers of this plant are the smallest, white ones, which are found in the center of a larger part, of a purplish color, which many mistakenly think are an integral part of the flower, i.e. petals, while instead they are bracts, i.e. leaves which over time have undergone changes. Generally the actual flowers originate from the so-called axillary attachment of the bracts. As for the coloring of the bracts, they can be fuchsia, pink or even orange. The bark is light brown and its branches have many thorns. Due to its characteristics, this plant can be kept in well-sunny and ventilated areas. In the winter months, if you notice that the temperature has dropped excessively, it is advisable to bring the pots into the interiors of the houses, to prevent any suffering from the Bougainvillea. In our country, thanks to a particularly favorable climate, it can be grown in all regions, with the sole exception of those areas where the climate is too harsh in some months of the year.
Watering and multiplication of Bougainvillea
The watering of this evergreen climbing shrub should be given frequently in the summer, taking care not to leave dangerous water stagnations in the soil.
The liquid fertilizer must be given throughout the year, avoiding however the flowering period, because an excess of production would be obtained which would lead to serious imbalances in the biological organism.
The ideal soil where to grow it must be composed of 2/5 of sand, 2/5 of peat and 1/5 of clay. Inside the pots the soil must be kept well drained and therefore it is advisable to prepare a layer of sand on the bottom of the pots themselves.
Repotting operations can be carried out every 2-3 years, by pruning the roots, at the beginning of winter.
The multiplication of this plant takes place by cutting, which is carried out by taking woody parts about ten centimeters long during the spring and then rooting them in a container with 50% sand and 50% peat, kept humid at a temperature on 20-25 degrees. Rooting develops within 20 days. However, the solution of air layering is also practicable.
General information on the Bougainvillea plant
It belongs to the Nyctaginaceae family, order Caryophyllales, is of tropical origin and among the most important species we must mention the buttiana, the spectabilis, the troli and the valverde. The known species are altogether eighteen. It is widespread in South America and especially in Brazil, a country where it was discovered in the mid-eighteenth century by Philibert Commerson, a famous French botanist, who decided to give it this name to pay homage to the leader of that scientific expedition that was called Louis. Antoine de Bouganville. Due to its peculiar characteristics it is particularly suitable for covering walls and pergolas.
The enemies and diseases of the Bougainvillea. What to do
At the end of our discussion it should be remembered that this plant suffers from frequent infestations of Cochineals, phytophagous parasites very widespread everywhere, which can be easily identified by anyone, given that they appear as small brown growths.
In this case it is necessary to proceed with the disinfestation operations of the plants with the use of anticoccidial products. The situation is even more serious if the plant is affected by the disease called ferric chlorosis, which occurs when there is no longer the formation of chlorophyll or there is insufficient formation. Recognizing the symptoms is very easy, because you will witness the rapid yellowing of the green parts. The reasons can be different: from an excess of water stagnation to a real infectious disease that can affect plants.