I Heart these

My 40 hour commitment allows me travel to various places around the U.S. for events, sponsor meetings, and other work related needs.  During my trip to Phoenix, I couldn't help but notice these florescent colored flowers that seemed to be everywhere!  Bouganvilla, even the name is pretty.

They were stunning and their florescent color was such a fantastic contrast to the earth tone buildings and backdrop.  I fell in love with them right then and there.  I also learned, the HARD WAY, that they have some very nasty thorns.  Regardless, I wanted to take one home with me.  Smuggle one in my suitcase. I have never seen any flower this brilliant at our zone 4 garden centers.  I refrained as I figured airport security would have a problem with the thorns and detain me for carrying a dangerous weapon.  Such is life.

Taking one home wouldn't have worked anyway. I found out that these tropical loving plants prefer zone 9 & 10, a far cry from my location.  I have been determined to find these beauties, designed to handle my winters or an equivalent ever since.  They would be perfect along the north side of my house, right along my privacy fence.  The burst of color would be so beautiful!  Plus the thorns would prevent the young whippersnappers next door from allowing their drunk friends to stand under my daughters window at all hours of the night, whooping it up.  It's all about the lioness protecting the cubs. At the same time, it would beautify my property and teach a lesson in courtesy and respect without me saying a word. The Bouganvilla can multitask and it doesn't even know it.

I have read that these can be grown in my location, the catch is that I would have to bring them in during the cold months.  There's the problem.  For some reason, I can grow anything outside, no problem.  The instant you bring it inside, my green thumb turns to brown. No kidding, house plants really are not my thing.  Don't ask me why, it's just the way it is.  Obviously this is not an option. 

So I'm sending out a shout out to all of my garden buddies in hopes to find an equivalent.

The plant must be able to grow with moderate sunlight, be a climber, have brilliant color and be cold weather hearty. 

I am truly looking forward to your suggestions.
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