All over sunny California you can encounter colorful bursts of Bougainvillea waving hello. Bougainvillea is a is a genus of thorny ornamental vines, bushes, and trees originally coming from South America. This striking plant is perfect for our climate and can bloom almost all year around. They are drought tolerant and actually bloom more with less water!
The blooms can vary from white, to pink, orange, red, deep red and purple. While white isn't as common for some reason, the other colors are quite common and can even come in two colored varieties, like pink and orange, and with foliage that also has two shades of green. The blooms are actually colored leaves, called bracts, and the tiny, flowering centers are the actual flowers.
Bougainvillea does well in climates 9b-11. If you want to check what zone you are in you can with the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map. If you are near frost zones, they don't like to be too cold, so plant near buildings for more shelter. They need at least 6 hours of sun a day to be happy plants. Bougainvilleas are wonderfully drought tolerant once established and do better with less water, resulting in more blooms, yay!
The incredible versatility of Bougainvilleas are that they can grow to 25 feet in different directions! Many people train them over fences and arbors, but they will grow over almost anything! They don't latch on like some vines, so they do need support and training to guide them where you want them to grow.
There are dwarf varieties too if you do not want to have one grow so big. They do have thorns, so be careful when pruning. They also have delicate roots so care when transplanting is key, do not disturb roots too much if possible. Transplanting once established is not recommended.
The beautiful pop of color they give can really add a nice touch to a garden, house, or commercial space. One of the easiest landscape additions to consider especially with all the color choices!
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There are some incredible advancements in technology for the garden that can make life a whole lot easier, help your garden thrive, and save water and money.
Ken Lain, The Mountain Gardener, and guru of high tech gadgets, has these suggestions for helping in the garden. If anyone knows where to start with adding tech, it's him!
8 Tech Gadgets for Your Garden by Ken Lain was originally published in Talking Glass Magazine Spring 2021 Tech Edition.
Here are the links to some the companies mentioned or shown above:
GrowIt! Garden App: https://www.growitmobile.com/
Brinno Garden Cam: https://www.brinno.com/
Spruce Irrigation: https://spruceirrigation.com/
Vegibee Pollinator: https://vegibee.com/
Garden Plan Pro: http://www.gardenplanpro.com/
Netatmo Weather Station: https://www.netatmo.com/en-us/weather
Husqvarna Automower: https://www.husqvarna.com/us/products/robotic-lawn-mowers/
Happy high tech gardening!
Southern California has great options when it comes to choosing new plants for landscaped areas and gardens. It's mild climate makes it a perfect home for both native varieties and plants from other similar climates from around the world.
Although there are many choices to choose from, considering ones that are drought resistant when established and non-invasive is a good idea. Whether you are looking for shrubs, succulents, vines, groundcover, grass, perennials, or trees, this list from the San Diego County Water Authority has great water smart options for each: "These plants have been selected because they are attractive, often available in retail nurseries, easy to maintain, long-term performers, scaled for residential landscapes, and of course, once established, drought tolerant."
From commercial to residential, our professionals at Pacific Vista Landscape Services are here to help with all your landscaping needs. If you are starting a new project or redoing an existing landscaped area, contact us and see what we can do for you!