Overwintering Bougainvillea

dottyinduncan(z8b coastal BC)October 7, 2008

I have a Raspberry Ice Bougainvillea in a pot and right now it is very pretty and healthy looking but I haven't had flowers this summer. Last winter I left it in the unheated greenhouse and it survived but wasn't happy. Would it be happier being treated as a house plant during the winter?

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bboy(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

I'd expect it to hate being inside a house.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2008 at 10:46PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

I heat my greenhouse and they weren't very happy but they lived.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 12:37PM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

To get them to flower, let them get really dry between waterings.

Yours is lovely, mine are much more scraggly.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 12:39PM
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dottyinduncan(z8b coastal BC)

Thanks for the responses. It took almost all summer for the plant to get lush and healthy looking so I thought that if I tried to copy the hawaiian environment (without the sun of course!) by bringing it into my garden room it might rebound sooner in the springtime. I will do what you suggest -- let it dry out between waterings. I wish I didn't lust after these wonderful tropical plants!

    Bookmark   October 10, 2008 at 12:46PM
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reg_pnw7(WA 7, sunset 4)

I doubt your house duplicates a Hawaiian environment. House interiors are fine for us cave dwellers, but they're too dark and too dry for most all plants. Our eyes adjust quickly to the relative darkness so we don't notice it, but the plants sure as heck do. And heating systems dry the air to desert levels, dehydrating leaves and encouraging mites.

A greenhouse could work, but not a house.

    Bookmark   October 11, 2008 at 1:04PM
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I have overwintered my bouganvillea in the home, east window and it did ok. I share your tropical cravings!

    Bookmark   October 12, 2008 at 11:00AM
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rita_h(PNW 8b)

I kept one for a few years, overwintering indoors in the brightest spot in the house -- a large obstructed east-facing window in the living room. A south-facing window would be better. It won't be happy indoors but it'll live until next spring. It may lose many of its leaves but will recover. Consider treating it with a mild insecticide before bring it indoors as you may bring in hitchhikers.... one aphid will multiply into millions in just a few weeks. Don't forget to treat the soil & pot, also.

(I killed mine one winter when I left it out too long.)

    Bookmark   October 15, 2008 at 11:52AM
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Last year we had excellent success in overwintering several Bougainvillea plants. Close to first frost, we cut them back to about 12" in diameter and moved the pots to the garage, little or no light, temps averaging 55 degrees (Indians - garage attached, but not heated). Watered very lightly twice so as to keep dormant and not promote growth. When frost was past in the spring, moved back out to patio and had amazing plants.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2011 at 11:12AM
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grrrnthumb(z8 WA)

I've overwintered mine for a couple years now the exact same way, same temps, perhaps a skosh more water. They look dead by spring but come back nicely every time.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2011 at 8:19PM
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