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Help with bougainvillea!!

Emily R.
2 months ago

We have 2 ENORMOUS 2-story bougainvillea on the NE side of our house. Very shady, especially now. When we moved into the house in September, they were super flower-y, although the left side definitely had less than the right. As of Dec, all the flowers were gone (augh) (in contrast to my once-decrepit potted bou in the back courtyard which gets tons of sun and is now full of flowers); and although there's lots of new-growth leaves on both plants and a few flowers trying to show up, the left side is decidedly sparse. The base of the trunk is soft and the landscaper thinks there could be a drainage issue -- it's getting too much water, or there's standing water. However, we only hand water, and not super often -- maybe once or twice/month. The sprinklers are not turned on here.

SO!! Any suggestions on how I can protect the base of the trunk from water? Re-doing the pavers is not an option. :( Would it work to stick some impermeable material around the trunk, so water gets directed away?

Or any other ideas on what could be stressing out this plant? It would break my heart if it dies. We're in CA Zone 9b.

August 2021

2 hours ago :(

Unhappy trunk. You can see the dark patch at the base where it's too wet.

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