My Bromeliad Bloom Turned Brown. What Should I Do?

Author: Melanie Dearringer24 Comments

Blooming, Frequently Asked Questions

My Bromeliad Bloom Looks Like It’s Dying

So your bromeliad bloom turned brown? Well, it might sound harsh, but once your bromeliad bloom has begun to die, you can cut it off! Bromeliads are known for their exotic, long-lasting flowers. These tropical plants can bloom for months, in fact. However, once a bromeliad’s flower begins to die, it is signaling the next cycle in its life. This next cycle is producing pups. Pups are new bromeliad plants, which will be the future generation of your bromeliad garden. By cutting off the bromeliad’s dying flower, you can help the plant refocus its energy on these new pups.

How to Remove a Spent Bromeliad Bloom

To remove a spent bloom, use a sharp, sterilized blade and cut the bloom stalk. Make a clean cut as close to the remaining plant as possible without harming it. Once you’ve removed the bloom, you can toss it in the trash or compost. Don’t neglect your bromeliad just because it finished blooming. Now comes the exciting part where it will begin to produce pups. For more information on how to identify bromeliad pups, remove them from the mother plant, correctly pot them, and care for them, check out our free Guide to Bromeliad Pups or our post A Beginner’s Guide to Bromeliad Pups.

What Else Do I Need to Know?

Once your bromeliad is finished producing pups, it will eventually die. Don’t be alarmed if suddenly your bromeliad plant isn’t looking too well, despite your best efforts to keep it healthy. This is just a natural progression in your plant’s life cycle. By now, your new pups will have been repotted in their own containers and will soon be featuring new blooms and beautiful colors.

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24 Responses to “My Bromeliad Bloom Turned Brown. What Should I Do?”

  1. Graciela C Ortiz-Young says:

    How will I know if I am cutting too close.

    1. Celeste Booth says:

      Graciela, just cut the bloom stalk — if you notice you are cutting into the other leaves of the plant, or below the stem, then you’ve gone too far.

  2. Jessica Gilbert says:

    I bought my bromeliad on mark down from my local grocery store and it looked like it was just beginning to bloom.Well I live in spring, TX(right outside of Houston) & so with it being warm June weather & this appearing to be a desert like plant I put it out side.within 2 days my plants leaves & some of the bloom started looking dried up & dying. The bloom never finished blooming. I brought it back inside & tried nursing it back to life but it still looks sick.I.just now cut away the dried up brown dead ends of the leaves of hoping it’d help some. Cause I just found out what type of plant it was just now.What should I do to save it & its pup?

    1. Celeste Booth says:

      It sounds like the bromeliad you have doesn’t like full direct sun. Or if it does, it would have needed a bit more weaning into the new environment. Keep it indoors in a brightly lit area (no direct sun) while it tries to recover. Make sure it is getting frequent waterings, but allow the potting mix to dry out between each watering. The mother plant will naturally die if it was already producing a pup. However, once your pup is large enough (about 1/3 the size of the mother plant with a few roots) you can cut it off with a sterile blade and repot it.

  3. kAY bILLINGS says:

    If I leave the pups on the mother plant will they produce flowers ?

  4. dave goodman says:

    My e mail is all lower case…My Brom has a pup growing from the soil line and the original bloom is dead and cut off. however the leaves appear healthy. do I still cut these off too above the new shoot?

    1. Melanie Dearringer says:

      Here is a link to our Guide to Bromeliad Pups. You should find it helpful.

  5. Dianne Foreman says:

    Plant Left outside in the cold. (Below 30 degrees) NOW turning brown.

  6. Ashley says:

    I bought my bromeliad over the holdays and it was looking very healthy until i brought it back to my hOuse at school. My house is pretty cold (usually at about 64) and ive had plants freeze already this year indoors. Besides raising the tempertaure which isnt an option, what should i do?

    1. Epiphyte says:

      Really? Whatever U do, don’t buy any more bromeliads.

  7. Lee Malinowski says:

    Mine is still beautiful but has 2 pups behind it-should I leave it alone?

    1. Celeste Booth says:

      You do not have to remove the pups if you do not want to. Feel free to leave them attached for as long as you’d like. If you get to the point where you’d like to remove them, just make sure they’re at least a 1/3 the size of the mother and have roots.

      1. Anitra Gudbaur says:

        I was told that the pups do not have to have roots when you remove them.

        1. Celeste Booth says:

          It’s not required, but if they have roots it’s a sure sign they can easily survive on their own detached from the mother plant.

  8. JoAnn sauers says:

    What does it mean to water in central leaf cup?

    1. Celeste Booth says:

      In the very center of many bromeliads is a cup-like area that can hold water. Google image “neoregelia” and you should get a visual for what the center cup looks like.

  9. Mrs Pauline Cooper says:

    Oh good news. My birthday gift Bromelia has 4 pups! I’m so pleased I have found out how to treat them. Think I will cut the floer stalk off this week , to give my ‘pups’ the best chance. Thanks so much for the info.

  10. candice says:

    How long does it take for the pups to get a red bloom? The mother had a red bloom when we first bought it,but its been a year with no blooms.just two new pups no red in 7 months

  11. Theresa Pepiot says:

    My bromeliads bloom turned brown and the leaves around it are dead and/or dying as well. When I touched the bloom to cut it, the entire bloom and stalk (?) came out. How do I save my plant from my being away on vacation and it was neglected?

  12. Virginia says:

    I have one that the plant looks dead. Should I throw it away or will it come back?

  13. Ellen says:

    my pups are about 10 inches no sign of flowers they are in a sunny window with evening shade. They are about 1 years. Should I just hope for a while longer. Thanks

  14. JP Enguehard says:

    I have two plants which did not give any flowers because I did not do what I should have done. Now, how long do we have to leave the apple, (cut up?(, in a plastic bag to get the flower? At what time of the year do we do that? Thanks.

  15. dee dickson says:

    original plant had red flower. lhave 2 pups in bloom but they r pale green. why not red

  16. Suzanne Seiler says:

    Melanie, i am a mosaic artist and would like to have permission to use the header photo as a guide to create a beautiful mosaic. Can you let me know who is the photographer or owner of this photo?

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