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Beginner Flowers: what is causing the faded flowers and curling leaves?

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tshirtguy
Phoenix, AZ

November 14, 2007
4:02 PM

Post #4192089

I'm trying to figure out what is causing these flowers to fade in color and have the leaves curl up. I'm guess its a nutrition or a water thing, but would love to hear from people who really know what they're talking about (unlike me).
I have several of these plants about the backyard. Only two of them are experienceing the problem. Its happeneing to the entire plant in both cases, but not effecting any of the other ajoining plants. They whole backyard is on a water timer, so everything is getting the same water. The picture is of two plants right next to each other where one has the probelm and one is healthy and fine.
I live in Phoenix and the weather is just starting to get chilly over night. This has just started happeneing within the last 2 weeks or so.
Any help would be greatly appreciated (including the name of the plant)...

Thanks in advance!

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JasperDale
Long Beach, CA
(Zone 10a)

November 14, 2007
4:12 PM

Post #4192126

Bougainvilleas are sensitive to cold as they are basically a tropical from South America. It could be that they're just reacting to the onset of your cooler nights.

Depending on how long they/ve been planted, and how cold it continues to get where you are, they may do fine.

They're also not fond of digging around their roots, so try to avoid that if possible.

Many large ones froze last winter in our cold snap here, but the larger more established ones came through it ok.
WeeNel
Ayrshire Scotland
United Kingdom

November 16, 2007
11:54 PM

Post #4201343

You dont say how long you have had your plants or if these are new to you/garden, These plants are from Brazil, therefore they will be used to fairly constant temp's however, they do have a growing/flowering season, so perhaps as Jasperdale has said, they have started to fade due to the cooler temps you have had over the past few nights, I can only say that as with all flowers, some colours fade faster than others, as for the leaves curling, it could also be a cooler temp, I was not too sure if I noticed some white-fly on one of the leaves right in the center of the pic, it may just have been drops of moisture, but worth a check, however, they are usually trouble free but we have all experienced some strange diseases and bugs that we dont usually have especially this year, I think most gardeners have had there ups and downs this year. Back to your plants, if they are going into a slight winter dormancy, then give less water than summer time, best way to find out if your plant needs water, is to poke your finger into the soil to about 2 or 3 inches, you will soon feel if the soil on these 2 plants are short of water, if you have a soak watering system, maybe some of the nozzles are blocked up, if it is overhead spraying, look see if the water spray has been altered by the mower/birds digging etc, it is worth checking out all the obvious things just to put your mind at rest, hope you get this solved as they are wonderful plants and unfortunately, I can only grow mine indoors and in pots, while growing, I have to give mine a feed every week in summer as they do use a lot of energy flowering for long periods. so good luck. WeeNel.
luis_pr
Hurst, TX
(Zone 7b)

December 10, 2007
2:14 AM

Post #4279137

This is going to sound weird, tshirtguy, but I purchased a bougainvillea and discovered the same thing when it bloomed! However, having been very familiar with these beauties, I realized I must have two varieties growing on the pot. I looked and realized that was the case. May I suggest that you look around and see if you also got two plants for the price of one? While it is true that the flower colors do fade, the two colors in your photo would not fade from one (say orange) to the other (say, magenta). Instead, they resemble the colors of two distinct varieties that I see often for sale.
gessiegail
Taft, TX
(Zone 9a)

December 10, 2007
2:31 AM

Post #4279192

I always thought bougainvillea was a desert plant?

Here is a link we might all like to read
http://phoenix.about.com/od/desertplantsandflowers/a/bougainvillea.htm

I am in south Texas in zone 9a and we had an unusual frost the other night and my leaves did exactly what yours are doing, but I watered in the pots real good and they are just blooming away again.

I haven't read that information of that link except to google the plant and several desert plant sites came up.
ecrane3
Dublin, CA
(Zone 9a)

December 10, 2007
2:56 AM

Post #4279277

They're native to several countries in South America. They can handle life without a lot of water which is why many people in hot dry climates grow them in their gardens, but they're not desert natives.
gessiegail
Taft, TX
(Zone 9a)

December 10, 2007
3:03 AM

Post #4279309

Oh, OK..I didn't know they came from South America. I just knew that people always call them desert plants. Thanks

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