Spectacular plant with a downside
BOUGAINVILLEAS are spectacular flowering scrambling climbers and shrubs that create vibrant tropical colour in all but the coldest gardens. A bougainvillea smothered in flowers is truly stunning.
Bougainvilleas can be extremely vigorous and older varieties have significant and painful thorns along their stems. The temptation is to prune bougainvilleas very hard to keep them under control, but this can promote additional rampant growth, exacerbating the problem. To help keep bougainvilleas under control, give them a light prune to remove the spent flowers after the main flowering flush has finished. It is better to trim off small amounts of growth regularly rather than giving them a close shave (unless absolutely necessary). The exception to this is water shoots, which are long soft stems that should be pruned off at the base when they appear.
Mandevillas are climbing plants with very pretty, tropical looking flowers. They make a beautiful plant to grow on a pergola, up a trellis on a wall or fence, grown as a small shrub, up a tripod or other support in a good-sized pot, or cascading out of a large hanging basket.
Sun Parasol is a range of gorgeous mandevillas from Oasis Horticulture. It includes Giant Crimson and Pretty Pink. Giant Crimson has large, rich red flowers and Pretty Pink has gorgeous candy pink blooms. Sun Parasols will start flowering in spring in warmer parts of Australia and continue flowering into autumn, so they provide many months of bright colour.
Bougainvilleas can be extremely vigorous and older varieties have large thorns along their stems.