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''Bougainvillea'' ( , ) is a genus of thorny ornamental vines, bushes, and trees belonging to the four o' clock family,
Nyctaginaceae Nyctaginaceae, the four o'clock family, is a family of around 33 genera and 290 species of flowering plant The flowering plants, also known as Angiospermae (), or Magnoliophyta (), are the most diverse group of Embryophyte, land plants, with 6 ...

Nyctaginaceae
. It is native to eastern
South America South America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven geographical regions are commonly regarded as continent ...

South America
, found from
Brazil Brazil ( pt, Brasil; ), officially the Federative Republic of Brazil (Portuguese: ), is the largest country in both South America and Latin America. At 8.5 million square kilometers (3.2 million square miles) and with over 211 mill ...

Brazil
, west to
Peru , , image_flag = Flag_of_Peru.svg , image_coat = Escudo_nacional_del_Perú.svg , other_symbol = Great Seal of the State , other_symbol_type = Seal (device), National seal , national_mott ...

Peru
, and south to southern
Argentina Argentina (), officially the Argentine Republic ( es, link=no, República Argentina), is a country located mostly in the southern half of South America South America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasse ...

Argentina
. Different authors accept from 4 to 18 species in the genus. The
inflorescence An inflorescence is a group or cluster of flower A flower, sometimes known as a bloom or blossom Cherry blossoms in Paris in full bloom. In botany, blossoms are the flowers of stone fruit fruit tree, trees (genus ''Prunus'') and of some ...
consists of large colourful sepal-like
bract In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanist, plant scientist or phytologist is a scientist who specialises in this field. The term "botany" comes from the Anci ...

bract
s which surround three simple waxy flowers.


Description

The vine species grow anywhere from tall, scrambling over other plants with their spiky thorns. They are
evergreen In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanist, plant scientist or phytologist is a scientist who specialises in this field. The term "botany" comes from the Anc ...

evergreen
where rainfall occurs all year, or
deciduous In the fields of horticulture Horticulture is the art of cultivating plants in gardens to produce food and medicinal ingredients, or for comfort and ornamental purposes. Horticulturists are agriculturists who grow flowers, fruits and nuts, ...
if there is a
dry season The dry season is a yearly period of low rainfall, especially in the tropics The tropics are the region of Earth Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbour and support life. 29.2% of ...
. The
leaves A leaf (plural leaves) is the principal lateral appendage of the vascular plant plant stem, stem, usually borne above ground and specialized for photosynthesis. The leaves, stem, flower and fruit together form the shoot system. Leaves are ...

leaves
are alternate, simple ovate-acuminate, 4–13 cm long and 2–6 cm broad. The actual
flower A flower, sometimes known as a bloom or blossom Image:Cerisier du Japon Prunus serrulata.jpg, Cherry blossoms in Paris in full bloom. In botany, blossoms are the flowers of stone fruit fruit tree, trees (genus ''Prunus'') and of some other plan ...

flower
of the plant is small and generally white, but each cluster of three flowers is surrounded by three or six
bract In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanist, plant scientist or phytologist is a scientist who specialises in this field. The term "botany" comes from the Anci ...

bract
s with the bright colours associated with the plant, including pink, magenta, purple, red, orange, white, or yellow. ''
Bougainvillea glabra ''Bougainvillea glabra'', the lesser bougainvillea or paperflower, is the most common species of bougainvillea used for bonsai. The epithet 'glabra' comes from Latin and means "bald". Description It is an evergreen, climbing shrub with thick, ...

Bougainvillea glabra
'' is sometimes called "paper flower" because its bracts are thin and papery. The
fruit In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanist, plant scientist or phytologist is a scientist who specialises in this field. The term "botany" comes from the ...

fruit
is a narrow five-lobed
achene An achene (; Greek ἀ, ''a'', privative A privative, named from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rom ...

achene
.


History

The first European to describe these plants was
Philibert Commerçon Philibert Commerson (; 18 November 1727 – 14 March 1773), sometimes spelled Commerçon by contemporaries, was a French naturalist Natural history is a domain of inquiry involving organisms, including animals, fungus, fungi, and plants, in t ...
, a
botanist Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanist, plant scientist or phytologist is a scientist who specialises in this field. The term "botany" comes from the Ancient Greek wo ...

botanist
accompanying French Navy admiral
Louis Antoine de Bougainville Louis-Antoine, Comte de Bougainville (, , ; 12 November 1729 – August 1811) was a French admiral Admiral is one of the highest ranks in some navy, navies, and in many navies is the highest rank. In the Commonwealth of Nations, Commonwealt ...
during his voyage of circumnavigation of the
Earth Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbour and support life. 29.2% of Earth's surface is land consisting of continents and islands. The remaining 70.8% is Water distribution on Earth, covered wi ...

Earth
, and first published by
Antoine Laurent de Jussieu Antoine Laurent de Jussieu (; 12 April 1748 – 17 September 1836) was a French botanist Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanist, plant scientist or phytologist ...

Antoine Laurent de Jussieu
in 1789. It is possible that the first European to observe these plants was
Jeanne Baret Jeanne Baret (; July 27, 1740 – August 5, 1807) was a member of Louis Antoine de Bougainville's expedition on the ships ''French frigate La Boudeuse (1766), La Boudeuse'' and ''French fluyt Étoile (1767), Étoile'' in 1766–1769. Baret is r ...
, Commerçon's lover and assistant, who was an expert in botany. Because she was not allowed on ship as a woman, she disguised herself as a man in order to make the journey (and thus became the first woman to circumnavigate the globe). Twenty years after Commerçon's description, it was first published as 'Buginvillæa' in
Genera Plantarum ''Genera Plantarum'' is a publication of Swedish naturalist Carl Linnaeus Carl Linnaeus (; 23 May 1707 – 10 January 1778), also known after his ennoblement Ennoblement is the conferring of nobility—the induction of an individual into ...
by
A. L. de Jussieu
A. L. de Jussieu
in 1789. The genus was subsequently spelled in several ways until it was finally established as "''Bougainvillea''" in the
Index Kewensis The 1893 ''Index Kewensis'' (IK), maintained by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, is a non-departmental public body In the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly kno ...
in the 1930s. Originally, ''B. spectabilis'' and ''B. glabra'' were undifferentiated until the mid-1980s when botanists classified them as distinct species. In the early 19th century, these two species were the first to be introduced into Europe, and soon, nurseries in France and Britain sold these varieties in Australia and throughout their former colonies. Meanwhile,
Kew Gardens Kew Gardens is a botanical garden, botanic garden in southwest London that houses the "largest and most diverse botany, botanical and mycology, mycological collections in the world". Founded in 1840, from the exotic garden at Kew Park, its li ...
distributed plants it had propagated to British colonies throughout the world. Soon thereafter, a crimson specimen in Cartagena, Colombia was added to the genus descriptions. Originally thought to be a distinct species, it was named ''B. buttiana'' in honour of the European who first encountered it. However, later studies classified it as a natural hybrid of a variety of ''B. glabra'' and possibly ''B. peruviana'' - a "local pink bougainvillea" from Peru. Natural hybrids were soon found to be common occurrences all over the world. For instance, around the 1930s, when the three species were grown together, many hybrid crosses were produced almost spontaneously in East Africa, India, the Canary Islands, Australia, North America, and the Philippines.


Cultivation and uses

Bougainvillea are popular
ornamental plant Ornamental plants or garden plants are plants Plants are predominantly photosynthetic Photosynthesis is a process used by plants and other organisms to Energy transformation, convert light energy into chemical energy that, through cel ...

ornamental plant
s in most areas with warm climates, such as
Florida Florida is a U.S. state, state located in the Southeastern United States, Southeastern region of the United States. Florida is bordered to the west by the Gulf of Mexico, to the northwest by Alabama, to the north by Georgia (U.S. state), Geor ...

Florida
and
South Carolina South Carolina () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspap ...

South Carolina
, and across the
Mediterranean Basin In biogeography, the Mediterranean Basin (also known as the Mediterranean region or sometimes Mediterranea) is the region of lands around the Mediterranean Sea The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by ...
. Although it is frost-sensitive and hardy in USDA
Hardiness Zones Global Plant Hardiness Zones, 250px A hardiness zone is a geographic area defined to encompass a certain range of climatic conditions relevant to plant growth and survival. The original and most widely used system, developed by the United States ...
9b and 10, bougainvillea can be used as a houseplant or hanging basket in cooler climates. In the landscape, it makes an excellent hot season plant, and its drought tolerance makes it ideal for warm climates year-round. Its high salt tolerance makes it a natural choice for colour in coastal regions. It can be pruned into a standard, but is also grown along fence lines, on walls, in containers and hanging baskets, and as a hedge or an accent plant. Its long arching thorny branches bear heart-shaped leaves and masses of papery bracts in white, pink, orange, purple, and burgundy. Many cultivars, including double-flowered and variegated, are available. Many of today's bougainvillea are the result of interbreeding among only three out of the eighteen South American species recognised by botanists. Currently, there are over 300 varieties of bougainvillea around the world. Because many of the hybrids have been crossed over several generations, it is difficult to identify their respective origins. Natural mutations seem to occur spontaneously throughout the world; wherever large numbers of plants are being produced, bud-sports will occur. This had led to multiple names for the same cultivar (or variety) and has added to the confusion over the names of bougainvillea cultivars. The growth rate of bougainvillea varies from slow to rapid, depending on the variety. They tend to flower all year round in equatorial regions. Elsewhere, they are seasonal, with bloom cycles typically four to six weeks. Bougainvillea grow best in dry soil, in very bright full sun and with frequent fertilisation; but they require little water once established, and in fact will not flourish if over-watered. They can be easily propagated via tip cuttings. ''Bougainvillea'' is also a very attractive genus for Bonsai enthusiasts, due to their ease of training and their radiant flowering during the spring. They can be kept as indoor
houseplant A houseplant is a plant Plants are predominantly photosynthetic Photosynthesis is a process used by plants and other organisms to Energy transformation, convert light energy into chemical energy that, through cellular respiration, c ...

houseplant
s in temperate regions and kept small by
bonsai Bonsai ( ja, 盆栽, , tray planting, ) is a Japanese version of the original traditional Chinese art ''penjing'' or ''penzai''. Unlike ''penjing'', which utilizes traditional techniques to produce entire natural sceneries in small pots that ...

bonsai
techniques. ''B.'' × ''buttiana'' is a garden hybrid of
''B. glabra''
''B. glabra''
and ''B. peruviana''. It has produced numerous garden-worthy cultivars. The cultivars 'San Diego Red' and 'Mary Palmer's Enchantment' have gained the
Royal Horticultural Society The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), founded in 1804 as the Horticultural Society of London, is the UK's leading gardening Gardening is the practice of growing and cultivating plants as part of horticulture Horticulture is the art of cultiv ...
's
Award of Garden Merit The Award of Garden Merit (AGM) is a long-established annual award for plants by the British Royal Horticultural Society The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), founded in 1804 as the Horticultural Society of London, is the UK's leading gardeni ...
. Bougainvillea are relatively pest-free plants, but they may be susceptible to worms, snails and
aphid Aphids are small sap-sucking insects and members of the Taxonomic rank, superfamily Aphidoidea. Common names include greenfly and blackfly, although individuals within a species can vary widely in color. The group includes the fluffy white Erio ...

aphid
s. The
larva A larva (plural larvae ) is a distinct juvenile form many animal Animals (also called Metazoa) are multicellular A multicellular organism is an organism In biology, an organism () is any organic, life, living system that f ...
e of some
Lepidoptera Lepidoptera ( ; ) is an order Order or ORDER or Orders may refer to: * Orderliness Orderliness is associated with other qualities such as cleanliness Cleanliness is both the abstract state of being clean and free from germs, dirt, trash, or ...

Lepidoptera
species also use them as food plants, for example the
giant leopard moth The giant leopard moth (''Hypercompe scribonia'') is a moth Moths are a paraphyletic In taxonomy, a group is paraphyletic if it consists of the group's last common ancestor and all descendants of that ancestor excluding a few—typi ...
(''Hypercompe scribonia'').


Symbolism and nomenclature

Various species of ''Bougainvillea'' are the official flowers of
Guam Guam (; ch, Guåhan ) is an organized, unincorporated territory of the United States in the Micronesia Micronesia (, ; from grc, μικρός ''mikrós'' "small" and ''nêsos'' "island") is a subregion of Oceania, consisting of thousa ...

Guam
(where it is known as the ''Puti Tai Nobiu'');
Lienchiang The Matsu Islands (; Foochow Romanized Foochow Romanized, also known as Bàng-uâ-cê (BUC for short; ) or Hók-ciŭ-uâ Lò̤-mā-cê (), is a Latin alphabet The Latin alphabet or Roman alphabet is the collection of letters originall ...
and Pingtung Counties in
Taiwan Taiwan, officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere, Eastern and N ...

Taiwan
;
Ipoh ) , image_map = , map_caption = Location of Ipoh in Perak , pushpin_map = #Malaysia#Asia#Earth , pushpin_mapsize = 275px , pushpin_map_caption = Ipoh ...

Ipoh
,
Malaysia Malaysia ( ; ) is a country in Southeast Asia Southeast Asia, also spelled South East Asia and South-East Asia, and also known as Southeastern Asia or SEA, is the geographical southeastern subregion of Asia, consisting of the regions ...

Malaysia
; the cities of
Tagbilaran , officially the ( ceb, Dakbayan sa ), is a Cities of the Philippines#Legal classification, and capital of the Provinces of the Philippines, province of , . According to the , it has a population of people. Encompassing a land area of , with ...
,
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...

Philippines
;
Camarillo, California Camarillo ( ) is a city in Ventura County in the U.S. state In the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a country Contiguous United States, primarily loc ...
;
Laguna Niguel, California Laguna Niguel () is a city in Orange County, California Orange County is located in the Los Angeles metropolitan area Greater Los Angeles, with a 2019 population of 18,710,563, is the second-largest urban region area in the United S ...
;
San Clemente, California San Clemente () is a coastal city in Orange County, California California is a U.S. state, state in the Western United States. With over 39.3million residents across a total area of approximately , it is the List of states and territories ...
; the cities of
Guangzhou Guangzhou (, ; ; or ; ), also known as Canton and alternatively romanized as Kwongchow or Kwangchow, is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the ...

Guangzhou
,
Shenzhen Shenzhen (; ; ), also known as Sham Chun, is a major sub-provincial A sub-provincial division () (or deputy-provincial divisions) in China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the Lis ...

Shenzhen
,
Huizhou Huizhou ( zh, c= ) is a city in central-east Guangdong Guangdong (, ), alternately romanized as Canton Province or Kwangtung, is a coastal province A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, ...

Huizhou
,
Zhuhai Zhuhai (, ; Yale Yale University is a private Private or privates may refer to: Music * "In Private "In Private" was the third single in a row to be a charting success for United Kingdom, British singer Dusty Springfield, after an ...

Zhuhai
, and
Jiangmen Jiangmen () , alternately romanized Romanization or romanisation, in linguistics Linguistics is the scientific study of language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken langu ...

Jiangmen
in
Guangdong Guangdong (, ), alternately romanized as Canton Province or Kwangtung, is a coastal province A province is almost always an administrative division Administrative division, administrative unitArticle 3(1). , country subdivision, admin ...

Guangdong
Province,
China China (), officially the People's Republic of China (PRC; ), is a country in East Asia East Asia is the eastern region of Asia Asia () is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern Hemisphere ...

China
;
Xiamen, Fujian Xiamen ( , ; ), also known as Amoy (, from Hokkien Hokkien () is a Southern Min Southern Min (), Minnan (Mandarin Mandarin may refer to: * Mandarin (bureaucrat), a bureaucrat of Imperial China (the original meaning of the word) ...
and
Naha, Okinawa is the capital city A capital or capital city is the municipality holding primary status in a Department (country subdivision), department, country, Constituent state, state, province, or other administrative region, usually as its seat of ...
. Is also the national flower in Grenada. Native to South America, bougainvillea carry several names in the different regions where they are present. Apart from
Rioplatense Spanish Rioplatense Spanish (), also known as Rioplatense Castilian, is a of spoken mainly in and around the of and . It is also referred to as River Plate Spanish or Argentine Spanish. It is the most prominent dialect to employ ' in both speech a ...
''santa-rita'',
Colombian Spanish Colombian Spanish (Spanish Spanish may refer to: * Items from or related to Spain: **Spaniards, a nation and ethnic group indigenous to Spain **Spanish language **Spanish cuisine Other places * Spanish, Ontario, Canada * Spanish River (disa ...
''veranera'',
Peruvian Spanish Peruvian Spanish is a family of dialects of the Spanish language that have been spoken in Peru since brought over by Spanish conquistadors in 1532. There are four varieties spoken in the country, by about 80% of the population. The four Peruvian ...
''papelillo'', it may be variously named ''primavera'', ''três-marias'', ''sempre-lustrosa'', ''santa-rita'', ''ceboleiro'', ''roseiro'', ''roseta'', ''riso'', ''pataguinha'', ''pau-de-roseira'' and ''flor-de-papel'' in
Brazilian Portuguese Brazilian Portuguese (', or ', ) is the set of dialects of the Portuguese language native to Brazil and the most influential form of Portuguese worldwide. It is spoken by almost all of the 200 million inhabitants of Brazil and spoken widely acr ...
. Nevertheless, in Portuguese and in Spanish are the most common names accepted by people of the regions where these languages are spoken but it is an introduced plant.


Toxicity

The sap of bougainvillea can cause serious
skin rashes A rash is a change of the human skin The human skin is the outer covering of the body and is the largest organ of the integumentary system. The skin has up to seven layers of ectodermal tissue (biology), tissue and guards the underlying mu ...

skin rashes
, similar to ''
Toxicodendron ''Toxicodendron'' is a genus of flowering plant Flowering plants include multiple members of the clade Angiospermae (), commonly called angiosperms. The term "angiosperm" is derived from the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece ...
'' species.Washington State Department of Labor and Industries
Reactions in the Skin Caused by Plants
Safety & Health Assessment & Research for Prevention Report: 63-8-2001 August 2001.


Taxonomy and phylogeny

As of 2010, ''
Bougainvillea ''Bougainvillea'' ( , ) is a genus of thorny ornamental vines, bushes, and trees belonging to the four o' clock family, Nyctaginaceae. It is native to eastern South America South America is a continent entirely in the Western Hem ...

Bougainvillea
'' is generally placed in the ''Bougainvilleeae'' subtribe (containing 3 genera) of the ''
Nyctaginaceae Nyctaginaceae, the four o'clock family, is a family of around 33 genera and 290 species of flowering plant The flowering plants, also known as Angiospermae (), or Magnoliophyta (), are the most diverse group of Embryophyte, land plants, with 6 ...

Nyctaginaceae
'' tribe with ''Pisonieae'' being a sister subtribe (containing 4 genera):


Species

According to the
Catalogue of Life The Catalogue of Life is an online database An online database is a database In computing, a database is an organized collection of Data (computing), data stored and accessed electronically from a computer system. Where databases are more co ...
, there are 16 species of ''
Bougainvillea ''Bougainvillea'' ( , ) is a genus of thorny ornamental vines, bushes, and trees belonging to the four o' clock family, Nyctaginaceae. It is native to eastern South America South America is a continent entirely in the Western Hem ...

Bougainvillea
''.


References


External links

* {{Taxonbar, from=Q156996 Nyctaginaceae Caryophyllales genera