Contact Us Host an Event Volunteer Join

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Tuesday - April 22, 2014

From: Mesa, AZ
Region: Southwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Help for a Transplanted Bougainvillea
Answered by: Anne Van Nest

QUESTION:

I recently planted a bougainvillea in our south-facing front yard. While planting it, we inadvertently severed a large portion of the root system from the plant. What, if anything, can we do to help the plant recover?

ANSWER:

Bougainvillea, although not a native plant, is a tough, drought-tolerant vine that grows well in the warmer and sunnier parts of the United States (hardiness zones 9 & 10). It has an interesting flower which is actually very small and white. The colorful paper "flowers" are really bracts and are showy for quite a long time. Bougainvillea can usually be found in pink, magenta, purple, red, orange, white or yellow. For more details about the bougainvillea plant take a look at its wikipedia entry.

To help your newly transplanted bougainvillea survive its initial establishment period, a little extra protection would be helpful. Some suggestions are to build a temporary shelter to give it some protection from the sun, provide extra water (moist not wet though), apply an anti-desiccant spray to the leaves, and prune back 25-30% of the top growth.

Barbara Medford answered a previous Mr. Smarty Plants question on handling transplant shock with a bougainvillea. Take a look at the question and her answer. She also included a good link to the Texas Plantanswers site about Growing Bougainvilleas.

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Non-native, invasive mimosa trees in Vincennes IN
April 29, 2014 - I have 3 Mimosa trees here in Vincennes, Indiana and so far none of them are leafing out this spring (4-28-14) Do you think that this past winter could have killed then?
view the full question and answer

Obtaining bark of Larix laricina from Hyderabad India
January 26, 2012 - I am in need of Larix laricina (Bark) for my research work. Please let me know how to procure it.
view the full question and answer

Are non-natives, Dappled willow and Kousa dogwood, toxic to horses?
May 27, 2009 - Are dappled willow trees/bushes or kousa dogwood trees toxic to horses?
view the full question and answer

Non-blooming climbing rose in Conroe, TX
October 09, 2009 - I have a climbing rose and it has never bloomed and has no thorns, it was a cutting from another rose bush. I have given it water and fertilize and have mulch around it also.
view the full question and answer

Problems with non-native althea in White Oak TX
June 10, 2011 - I have an althea bush that is 2 years old. I have never had a problem with it before but this year only half of it has leaved out and is blooming. The other half has some very small leaves and very sm...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.