Bougainvilleas are plants that thrive in tropical areas/temperatures with high heat and little rainfall. They are full sun plants meaning they need AT LEAST five hours of direct sunlight a day. In winter, Bougainvillea CAN survive only if brought indoors.
The most important part of Bougainvillea care is the use of a fertilizer specifically made for the Bougainvillea (such as “Bougainvillea & Flowering Vine Food” by Ferti-lome), as it’s root system is very delicate. Feed the plant about every two weeks until blooming begins, then, once a month after that.
A good rule of thumb for the Bougainvillea is to let the soil be visually dry before watering. But once it is time to water, make sure the whole root system is included. Wilting flowers are another warning that your plant needs watering. Take care not to allow the plant to get too dry, while making sure it does not sit in water for too long– balance is the key. If planted, plant on higher ground and if in a pot, make sure to keep all holes used for drainage clear.
If you want to prune your plant, it is best to do it after it is finished blooming– as Bougainvilleas bloom in cycles.