En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - June 29, 2009

From: Blackfoot, ID
Region: Rocky Mountain
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Care for non-native bougainvillea in Blackfoot, ID
Answered by: Anne Bossart

QUESTION:

Can I plant Bougainvillea in Blackfoot, ID? I would like to plant it but am concerned about the harsh winter killing it off.

ANSWER:

Bougainvillea is a plant native to Brazil which will not survive the winter outdoors in Idaho, but can be grown sucessfully indoors under the right conditions.

According to the University of Saskatchewan Extension service Bougainvilleas demand a minimum of 4 hours of direct sunlight and bright indirect light at other times. Without good light they will not flower and they may lose their leaves. They do well in normal room temperature. This can be lower in winter but never below 10C.

Water moderately during their period of active growth (spring through fall), allowing the upper 2.5 cm (i in.) of soil to dry out between waterings but never the entire root ball. If they become too dry they will shed their leaves. They will need less water in winter and should have good drainage at all times.

Pot in a loam-based media with added peat moss. They can be repotted each spring up to a maximum of a 20 cm (8 in.) pot, after which they should be top dressed annually with the same type of potting mixture.

Fertilize them every 2 weeks during their period of active growth with a complete soluble houseplant fertilizer with micronutrients (such as 20-20-20). Follow the label directions.

Personal experience tells me that the trick to success with this plant indoors is a bright location which is cooler than room temperature in the wintertime (50's and 60's) but not below freezing.

 

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Spacing of non-native crapemyrtle in Anniston AL
August 04, 2009 - We bought some Dazzle dwarf crepe myrtle bushes. We need to know how far apart to plant them. Thanks
view the full question and answer

Can trimmings from non-native globe willows be planted from Broken Arrow OK?
June 13, 2010 - We have 2 globe willow trees in our back yard. We trim low hanging branches. Can we take these cut branches, -plant them and have it grow into a new globe willow tree?
view the full question and answer

Problems with peonies in Indianola, WA
May 18, 2009 - My 5 year old peony plant didn't come up. I thought it was dead so I dug it up. I found a clump of thick roots. I separated them, and then realized these were probably the bulbs. It is the middle...
view the full question and answer

Evergreen grasslike plants for Austin TX
April 15, 2008 - Hi, I'm in Austin, TX and looking for some evergreen grass-looking plants. Would you explain the similarities/differences between Butterfly Iris and Lily Grass in this regard? Thank you
view the full question and answer

Non-native jade plants and spider plants beneath Mayberry tree in Bay Point CA
October 15, 2013 - I have a fruitless Mayberry in my back yard that's about 50/50' can I plant jade and spider plants under it? The tree is very healthy.
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center