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training bougainvillea?

Posted by fat_kitty Z10 (So. Cal.) (My Page) on
Sat, Sep 8, 07 at 19:09

Hello, all. I'd like to train a bougainvillea to arch over my front door, similar to the picture show. I know that it has thorns and will need to be kept pruned so it doesn't interfere with the entrance! I know that some bougainvilleas are "vining", but they don't attach by themselves -- they need some kind of support. What do you all recommend to attach to the wall? I couldn't get close enough to this exmple when I took the photo. I'm sure I could use a trellis, but are there any other, less visible, options? The house is spanish style, stucco. Does it make sense to drill some eyehooks or similar into the exerior and maybe some cords between them? The trellis would help me get it UP the wall, but I'd like it to arch over the door.....

Thanks for your help! Maggie

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Follow-Up Postings:

RE: training bougainvillea?

A heavy cable run between hooks would support a vine of moderate weight. I've never grown this plant, but it looks like it could get fairly heavy. You might want to consider something more substantial, like a piece of pipe supported by vertical pieces, painted to blend with the house. The vines would hide it eventually.

Ask this question over on the vines forum?

RE: training bougainvillea?

Hello Maggie,

We have Barbara Karst bougainvillea and love it but are in a colder area than you so it dies to the ground every winter. It does seem no matter what time of year we visit Orange County we see these lovely plants draped over fences and walls blooming there heads off. Here we're just happy seeing how close it can come to the top of the wall before frost.

We have used hooks and cables on a grape vine and it seemed very sturdy but I didn't really like it. We had problems keeping it tied at the ends and although green it wasn't very attractive.

Putting a hole in stucco seems like something to be avoided it possible. If you have a patch of dirt on the other side of your entry perhaps you could put another trellis the same color as your house as saypoint suggests and put a board(s) across it that matches both trellis and blends in with your house. (Bougainvilleas don't seem very heavy to me). Otherwise a permanently positioned large pot could hold a trellis on the other side of the entry and just run something between the two trellis and you wouldn't have to be messing up your stucco.

Good luck with this project, it sounds wonderful. Maria

RE: training bougainvillea?

Hi, Maria. Yes, I grew up in O.C. (and now live in L.A.) and it's true that the bougainvillea does well here all year 'round and grows like crazy. I particularly love when they mix different colors together... I think it is near the LACMA museum in L.A. (near the Grove shopping center and Park La Brea) where the street is lined with bougainvillea in every color -- it looks very lush and rich. Thanks for your suggestions and I'll see if I can make it work.
Best, Maggie

RE: training bougainvillea?

  • Posted by catkim San Diego 10/24 (My Page) on
    Sun, Sep 16, 07 at 20:27

Some bougainvilleas are more stout than others. I'd suggest selecting one of the lightweights -- ''not'' Barbara Karst or San Diego Red, they are honking big. Maybe a pink or lavender, which tend to be more lithe. Ask a reputable nurseryman or look it up. Also some are less thorny than others, check it out before you plant. An actual trellis will soon be superfluous, the trained bougie will stand on its own after a few years.

RE: training bougainvillea?

I saw a circular trellis that fans out at the top that you can plant your bouginvillas in, on the victory garden today but did not get the info on where to get them. Any suggestions?

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