Bougainvillea glabra or 'paper flower' gives most of its spectacular colour from its modified leaves (bracts) surrounding each small flower. This variety has variegated leaves unlike its parent; they are grey green, with cream variegation. The flowers are fantastic.
They give an astounding, long lasting display of those familiar, bright purple bracts, popular on Mediterranean balconies. They can be grown as standards and as container plants. This is a popular climber good for conservatories but will need pruning to keep its size within bounds, or can be grown outside in frost free climates.
It is seldom affected by pests and diseases, but plants in the conservatory can get infected with Whitefly.
Bougainvillea may be grown from root cuttings and branch cuttings. Cuttings can propagate plants easily. Cuttings should be planted in a shady area until they form roots.
The shoots, a few inches in length, can be replanted in sandy soil with bottom heat and moisture. Half-ripened or old woodcuttings in six to twelve inch lengths may be rooted April to June. Bougainvillea does best in dry conditions.
They need full sunlight, warm weather and well drained soil to flower well.
Latin Name Explanation
After Louis Antoine de Bougainville (1729-1811), explorer and scientist. Glabra = glabrous. Latin for smooth. Variegata - derived from the Latin "variegatus" which means "to make or have different colours."