Understanding Different Types of Bougainvillea and How to Care For Them

Bougainvillea is a genus of flowering plants that are known for their vibrant and showy bracts, which are colorful leaf-like structures surrounding the small, inconspicuous flowers. There are several species and cultivars of bougainvillea, each with its own unique characteristics. Here are some popular types of bougainvillea:

1. Bougainvillea spectabilis

Bougainvillea spectabilis is one of the most common and widely cultivated species. It features bright and eye-catching bracts in shades of pink, purple, red, orange, or white. This species is known for its vigorous growth and can reach heights of up to 30 feet (9 meters).

2. Bougainvillea glabra

Bougainvillea glabra, also known as paperflower, is a smaller and more compact species compared to Bougainvillea spectabilis. It produces an abundance of bracts in various colors, including pink, purple, red, and orange. Bougainvillea glabra is a popular choice for container gardening and is commonly used as a colorful ornamental plant.

3. Bougainvillea ‘Barbara Karst’

‘Barbara Karst’ is a popular cultivar of bougainvillea, known for its deep magenta-red bracts. It is a vigorous and fast-growing variety that can reach heights of 20 feet (6 meters) or more. ‘Barbara Karst’ is highly resistant to pests and diseases, making it a low-maintenance choice for landscapes and gardens.

4. Bougainvillea ‘Raspberry Ice’

‘Raspberry Ice’ is a cultivar of bougainvillea that displays stunning bi-colored bracts in shades of pink and white. The bracts transition from white to deep pink, creating a striking contrast. ‘Raspberry Ice’ is a compact and trailing variety, making it suitable for hanging baskets, containers, or cascading over walls.

5. Bougainvillea ‘Golden Jackpot’

‘Golden Jackpot’ is a cultivar of bougainvillea that stands out for its unique golden-yellow bracts. The bracts have a vibrant and sunny appearance, adding a touch of warmth to the garden. ‘Golden Jackpot’ is a compact and bushy variety, making it ideal for small gardens, borders, or container plantings.

6. Bougainvillea ‘Imperial Delight’

‘Imperial Delight’ is a cultivar of bougainvillea that features pale pink bracts with a hint of purple. The bracts have a delicate and pastel appearance, providing a soft and elegant touch to the garden. ‘Imperial Delight’ is a compact variety that works well as a hedge, ground cover, or in container plantings.

These are just a few examples of the many types and cultivars of bougainvillea available. Bougainvillea plants are appreciated for their stunning and long-lasting bracts, drought tolerance, and ability to thrive in warm and sunny climates. Whether used as a climbing vine, ground cover, or container plant, bougainvillea adds a vibrant burst of color to gardens and landscapes.