I’ve always loved bougainvillea plants since I first encountered them decades ago after moving to California. Their flowers come in amazingly vibrant colors, and the shape of both the plant and the flowers themselves is very striking.
But they do have their downsides (click any photo to see it enlarged):
Those are some might long shoots! Going straight up!
I decided to cut the long shoots off and get rid of them. That was a trial in and of itself, because — surprise! — bougainvillea plants have thorns. And not just any thorns, mind you. These suckers put dinky little rosebush thorns to shame.
The only good thing about the thorns is that, unlike roses, they’re spaced far enough apart that you can get a good handhold on a branch in between them.
Here’s how big the branches were that I cut off. The longest of these buggers probably clocked in at over 12 feet.