Saturday, August 21, 2010


Written by Felix Daray, published in Agriculture Magazine, July 2010 issue

Bougainvillea is a beautiful flowering plant that is easy to grow. But it could be more beautiful when grafted, which means it will be more marketable , too.

One plant grower who sell grafted bougainvillea is Reynaldo Balansag. of Cabligan, Matanao, Davao del Sur. He got this idea in 2008 when he accompanied his friend to as well-known flower garden in Davao City. It was there Rey first saw beautiful, multicolored grafted bougainvillea plants.

He was so attracted to bougainvillea plants that he became curious on how to grow these. So even though with his little knowledge on grafting he learned from high school and from his friend who worked in the flower garden, he tried to do it in his flower garden in Cabligan.

What Rey does is that he buys big potted bougainvillea plants and uses these as rootstocks. When he first tried it, he used rootstocks measuring 2 cm to 5 cm in diameter. “The biggest rootstock I grafted is 10 cm in diameter. And I couldn’t believe I did it, said Rey.

For Each rootstock, he inserts three scions of different colors. The plants will bloom after six months.

“Bougainvillea will thrive is almost any soil as long as it is well drained and fertile. At least five hours of exposure to full sunlight is the minimal sunlight requirement for full bloom. Less than that, the plants may not bloom well, but have satisfactory vegetative growth.” says Rey.

“Do not apply fertilizer to dry soil. Use complete fertilizer and apply it every two weeks.” To lessen production cost, use organic fertilizers with humus soil. Moreover, since this flowering plant is not susceptible to fungus, furthers Rey, then there’s no need for insecticide.

Reys sells these at P600 to P800 each depending on the color and the size of the rootstock. The most attractive species, he said, is the variegated bougainvillea from China. Its leaves have three colors: gray pink and light green.

Rey also propagates and sells other ornamental plants, but it’s the grafted bougainvillea that amazes him the most. This is because “from ordinary flowering pots, bougainvillea when grafted turns into an exotic plant.

By Felix B. Daray