Bougainvillea not blooming may have gotten you thinking whether you might have been doing some wrong practices that are causing your plant not to bloom. It can be worrying because this plant tends to bloom with a bunch of mesmerizingly beautiful flowers in your garden.Bougainvillea Not Blooming

Here, we cover all the possible reasons for you to consider. We also include the corresponding solutions for each of these reasons and some plant care guides.

Why Are Your Bougainvillea Not Blooming? 7 Reasons

Your bougainvillea plants are not not blooming because of overwatering, inadequate amount of sunlight, soil issues, cold temperature, too much fertilizer, and over-pruning. You should identify which of the following is affecting your plant so that you can make the necessary correction and let your bougainvillea blooms profusely.

– Overwatering

One of the common mistakes that gardeners commit when growing bougainvillea is watering them too frequently. This wrong practice actually prevents your plant from blooming. Bougainvillea plants’ native environment is hot and dry. It makes them stressed and prone to root rot when you are making the soil damp because of giving too much water.

– Inadequate Sunlight

Not having a sufficient amount of sunlight is another reason why your bougainvillea green but not blooming. Bougainvillea as a tropical perennial plant prefers a warm climate, just like in its natural habitat. It requires at least 6 hours of direct full sunlight daily, and not receiving it will result in more foliage growth and fewer flowers.Reasons of Bougainvillea Not Blooming

– Soil Issue

Consistently damp soil due to overwatering has the same effect when the soil is slowly draining. It retains too much water, which could lead to root rot and prevent your bougainvillea from developing flowers. That is why it is important that you use a well-draining soil mix that your plant prefers to give it a chance to bloom without stressing over boggy soil.

– Cold Temperatures

Warmer temperatures mean more blooms, whereas colder temperatures mean fewer blooms. As bougainvillea thrives in warmer climates, cold temperatures affect their growth and development. It can only tolerate a temperature as low as 40 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature is relatively cold, you will notice your plant will have a hard time blooming.

– Overfertilization

The nutrients your plant is getting from the fertilizers you are applying can be very beneficial to it. However, in bougainvillea’s case, over fertilizing can produce more leaves than flowers, which is becoming the issue. When you notice that your plant produces plenty of foliage and no blooms, that is one indication that you are overfeeding them.

This is due to the excessive amount of nitrogen fertilizer you are applying. Just like other plants, having nitrogen boosts the production of lush and healthy foliage at the expense of flower buds.

– Over Pruning

Bougainvillea needs pruning if you do not want them to end up in a tangled mass of old and new growth. Pruning and trimming is also a secret to more colorful and abundant blooms, plus you can keep the plant in your desired shape, just how you want it to be. However, over-pruning will badly affect the bougainvillea flower production.Bougainvillea Not Blooming Details

– Repotting

Repotting can be one of the reasons why your plant is not blooming. It can be hard to believe, especially if you are used to repotting your other plants, as it can be beneficial to them. However, for bougainvillea, they actually love the concept of being rootbound, and they bloom more rigorously in that state than when they are planted in a landscape.

How to Remedy Bougainvillea Not Blooming? 7 Solutions

To remedy Bougainvillea not blooming there are seven solutions. You have to make sure they get enough water and sunlight. They also need well-draining soil and a certain temperature range. Correct fertilization and pruning are also essential. Ultimately, you can just leave them be by not repotting.

– Enough Watering

Bougainvillea thrives in hot and dry conditions, which you should mimic to allow your plant to flourish and stimulate bunches of gorgeous flowers to bloom. Enough watering will encourage more flowers than leaves. Keep in mind that your bougainvillea plants are hardy and only need much water from time to time.

The stress your plant is getting from overwatering also affects the development of its colorful blooms. So, water your plant only when the top two inches of the soil feel dry to the touch, or do it once every week during the spring and summer seasons. Make sure to give your plant a good soak when you water it to encourage the establishment of roots in the soil.

This also improves your plant’s capability to access nutrients and drought tolerance. Try to find the balance to meet the required moisture level that will not give your bougainvillea plant water stress.

– Enough Sunlight

Plant your bougainvillea in a spot where it can receive at least six hours of full sun every day to encourage flowering. If your plant is potted, move it around to help them grow best and reach their full blooming potential. The day length also influences the flowering of bougainvillea, it flowers best with day lengths shorter than twelve hours, which replicates the light conditions it prefers in their natural habitat.

– Well-draining Soil

To help your bougainvillea bloom profusely and keep it away from root rot and other possible diseases, make sure to use a loose, well-draining potting soil mix, and add some horticultural sand, perlite, or grit, which will improve the drainage of the soil and avoid a waterlogged environment. Bougainvillea is not really fussy with any kind of soil as long as it is well-draining.

Use the kind of soil that does not get easily compacted so that it would be easier for water and nutrients to reach the roots of your plant.Solutions to Bougainvillea Not Blooming

– Ideal Temperature

When growing bougainvillea during the winter months, your plant will need protection to maintain blooms. Although your plant can tolerate cooler temperatures at night time, the ideal temperature for it is around 65 degrees Fahrenheit for it to be able to develop blooms. When the weather is cold during summer, expect your bougainvillea to develop lesser blooms.

If your plant is potted, it is best to move it indoors and protect it with fleece. During the day time, place your plant near a warm and sunny window to ensure that it blooms and achieves its preferred temperature.

– Correct Fertilization

It is best to focus on applying potassium and phosphate for your bougainvillea if you want it to produce more flowers. Use a half-strength all-purpose NPK fertilizer during the spring to meet the plant’s required nutrition for blooming and growing.

Nevertheless, bougainvillea can tolerate neglect and can produce flowers in well-draining soil, so if your plant does not bloom during the bougainvillea blooming season, leave it for a year without applying fertilizer, and it should be in its vigorous health to develop prolific blooms.

– Correct Pruning

If you are trimming your plant because you want it to stay small, opt to grow the dwarf variety of bougainvillea. Trimming and pruning must be done with care. You may want to cut the long and fleshy water shoots as they are not doing anything for your plant aside from messing up its shape.

You can also do tip pruning or the removal of the soft new growth by one to six inches to achieve more colorful flowers. Prune your plant only when there is no danger of frost, and trim it lightly after every flowering cycle during the blooming season to keep it in shape. Make sure you use a clean and sharp pruner, and you should use gloves because bougainvillea has long thorns.Correct Pruning Bougainvillea

– Discontinue Repotting

One of the tricks to having a healthy and generous flowering bougainvillea is not to repot. Let it grow in its pot and be kept rootbound because this plant actually thrives on neglect. Some growers choose to bury their potted bougainvillea in the ground for their landscape garden.


Bougainvillea not blooming can truly be a worrying issue, but upon reading this article, you realize that it is a simple problem that can be easily fixed. The key to a healthy and abundant flowering plant is to simply meet all the care requirements it needs. It is best to remember the following key points below:

  • Bougainvillea loves hot and dry conditions and is drought-tolerant.
  • As long as the soil is well-draining, expect your plant to flourish.
  • Ample sunlight means abundant blooms.
  • The warmer the temperature, the bigger the potential that you plant will develop flowers.
  • Correct pruning and fertilization would be a great help for blooming.

Bougainvillea is one of the easiest flowering plants to grow. We believe it would not be hard for you to help your plant by addressing this issue. It would not be long until your plant surprises you with   a bunch of wonderful blooms in your garden.

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