Bougainvillea In Pots
Bougainvillea is a climbing shrub that produces so many flowers that it creates a color show during spring and summer. It can reach 6-8 meters high, so it is used to cover pergolas and roofs. But, did you know that you can easily control their growth by regular pruning?
It is a plant that heals well and quickly. So much so that, if you have nowhere to put it, we encourage you to have a bougainvillea in a pot .
What pot to choose?
The bougainvillea is a plant that looks good in all types of pots, whether plastic or terracotta. But these two materials are so different, that each has its own advantages and disadvantages. Let’s see what they are:
- It weighs little : you can change places easily.
- It is economical : even the one that measures 40cm in diameter can leave you for just 4-5 euros. Although yes, if it is resistant plastic will cost around 7 euros.
- It is easy to clean : if it stains, simply pass it a rag.
- It can be carried by the wind : when you weigh a little, if you live in an area where the strong wind usually blows, you can take it with you.
- Over time it breaks down : although it is made of resistant plastic, in the end it ends up spoiling sooner or later.
- It is very durable : terracotta is a material that withstands the inclemencies of the weather well, so it remains intact for many, many years.
- The wind can not take it : it has the ideal weight to withstand the gusts of wind.
- It is very decorative : nowadays we can find pots with very elegant designs and shapes.
- Its sale price is high : a 40cm pot can cost about 15-20 euros.
- If it falls, it breaks : you have to be very careful with this, because the terracotta is a very resistant material but at the same time very fragile. If it falls to the ground, it is most likely to break.
How to care for the Bougainvillea in a pot?
When we have decided which pot we will use to have our bougainvillea, we will have to transplant it. For this, what we will do is the following:
- First, we will place coffee filters in the drainage holes. This will prevent the substrate from being lost every time we water.
- Next, we will place the “new” pot in the place where we want to have the plant, and fill it with universal culture substrate mixed with 30% pearlite a little less than half.
- Then, we will extract the plant from its “old” pot, and introduce it into the “new” one. If we see that it is too high or too low, we will remove or add substrate. To have a guide, we must know that the base of the stems should be a little below the edge of the pot.
- Then, we will finish filling with substrate.
- Now, we water well, consciously.
- Finally, we can put a tutor if we want to climb through a lattice or wall.
For it to grow well, it will be very important to water it from time to time. The frequency will vary depending on the climate as well as the location, but generally we will have to water every 3 days in summer and every 5-6 days the rest of the year .
In case of doubt, we will check the humidity of the substrate. For this we can do several things:
- Use a humidity meter : to be more reliable, it is highly recommended to introduce it in different points.
- Introduce a thin stick of wood : if it comes out practically clean when it comes out, then we can water the substrate dry.
The bougainvillea needs to be fertilized during the spring and summer to be able to grow and flourish. Therefore, during all warm months it is highly advisable to fertilize with liquid fertilizers following the indications specified on the product packaging.
Pruning is essential when you have a bougainvillea in a pot, because not doing so could stop its growth and we could even lose it. But, when and how was it pruned?
To control its growth we have to wait until the end of winter and then disinfect a pruning shears . When we have done it, we will observe the plant carefully, first from a distance and then closely. So we can have an idea of how their development is and what stems we have to cut or remove.
Then, we will have to prune those stems that look weak, sick or broken. If what we want is to have a non-climbing shrub in a pot, we will cut more or less in half ; in this way we will stimulate the production of low stems.
With these tips, we will have a lovely bougainvillea ????
I am Don Burke, one of the authors at My Garden Guide. I am a horticulturist that cultivates, grows, and cares for plants, ranging from shrubs and fruits to flowers. I do it in my own garden and in my nursery. I show you how to take care of your garden and how to perform garden landscaping in an easy way, step by step.I am originally from Sydney and I wrote in local magazines. Later on, I have decided, more than two decades ago, to create my own blog. My area of specialization is related to orchid care, succulent care, and the study of the substrate and the soil. Therefore, you will see many articles dedicated to these disciplines. I also provide advice about how to improve the landscape design of your garden.