Growing Bromeliads Indoors & Outdoors
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Growing Indoors, Growing Outdoors
Collection of Tips for Growing Bromeliad Plants Either Indoors or Outdoors
The following tips, suggestions and information is intended to inform and help novice or expert bromeliad growers get ideas for growing bromeliad gardens indoors or outdoors.
Tips for Growing Bromeilads
- For epiphytic (non-terrestrial) varieties, we grow bromeliads in small pine bark as a soil base. This provides excellent aeration and circulation for the roots that form, and provides sufficient support for the plant. For terrestrials, use a loose and light organic soil mixture. For small epiphytic tillandsias, mounting them on driftwood or cork is an excellent and healthy way to display them.
- Location is everything. Since different bromeliads prefer different levels of light, they will let you know how to please them. If the foliage becomes bleached or burned, reduce the light. If the plant isn’t producing the color you know it should have, increase the light. Finding the right level of light makes all the difference in bringing out the colorful qualities of these plants. Good air circulation is a common and vital need to all genera of bromeliads.
- Bromeliads should not be fertilized regularly unless you are trying to increase pup production. There are some exceptions. Tillandsias and Cryptanthus respond well to regular fertilization. Fertilization will reduce the coloration in most bromeliad hybrids that are noted for their color. (e.g. Neoregelias and Billbergias. When fertilizing, use a liquid soluble 20/20/20 fertilizer at half the recommended strength).
- How to display bromeliads is always a good question. Some suggestions follow. We grow ours in large hanging plant containers with three plants average per container. We group the plants by commonality, (e.g. Neoregelias in one planter, Aechmeas in another, or mixed genera that share the same light requirements). Other ways are to display them on single poles with pot loops in spiral form. Yet another way would be to incorporate them into a ground level display by digging out a hole, placing a one gallon plant or nursery container in the hole, and inserting an 8″ plastic pot into the plant container with the bromeliad potted in small pine bark. This gives the appearance they are terrestrial without them ever touching the soil. As long as the basic cultural requirements are met, bromeliads can be displayed in a number of other imaginative and creative ways. They can also be attached to trees to resemble their natural habitat. However, collector or rare plants might best be grown as individual plants for greenhouse or other special display.
- After the plant flowers, it will produce “pups” or young plants then die. The young pups will take over the next generation. Pups should not be removed until visible root structures can be seen at their base or they are at least 1/3 to 1/2 the size of the mother plant. Make sure the pups are cut off with a solid base. Some bromeliads reproduce so abundantly, you’ll be sharing them with friends. Dead flower stalks can be cut off if unattractive until the mother plant dies.
- If you have a strong interest in Bromeliads and want to learn a lot more about them from other Bromeliad specialists and enthusiasts, check out the rest of Bromeliads.info information about bromeliad pplants and flowers.
9 Responses to “Growing Bromeliads Indoors & Outdoors”
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I’ve found it to be very economical to grow a good portion of the Bromeliads I use on my smaller jobs. I charge for replacements and use my own bromeliads. I use a variety of old flower pots and a small greenhouse with little more investment than my own time. Thanks for the tips!
I have 2 different types of “bromeliads” and am not sure what kind they are, can you help me? (1) has wide dark green leaves with 2 “red feather” stem coming up through the center. (2) has thin dark green leaves with 1 “hot pink feather” coming through the center. What is the best way to take care of these, and can I use “miracle grow” potting soil?
Potting soil is not necessary for growing bromeliads. Some bromeliads can thrive when they’re mounted on a piece of wood or a piece or cork bark. They can sometimes be purchased this way, but it is easy to affix them there yourself. Just push some thin wire through the bark and twist it around the base of the plant. When it needs water, just turn the plant upside-down and immerse in water for a couple of hours. Bromeliads are native to the tropical and subtropical regions of the Western Hemisphere, where they have adapted well to their surroundings by using their roots to hold on to something instead of gathering moisture and nutrients. The plants have developed creative ways of getting moisture through their leaves.
Bromeliads like a coarse, quick-draining, acidic potting mixture. A homemade formula of equal parts perlite, burr bark and commercial potting soil makes a good home for bromeliads. Please check out our ‘Common Bromeliad House Plants‘ article under Classification to find what kind of bromeliad plant you have.
i purchased some bromelaids at a garage sale. bout 25 or so and gave some away at Christmas for gifts because i knew nothing of them. i kept several in the house and left some outside to see what worked best. the outside ones didn’t like it as much as the inside ones. i didn’t take proper care because i really didn’t care for them, however they are producing pups and i want to learn more about them. i read up on some info. should i keep them in thier container until i see thier roots form? i want to know what is the best soil to keep them in i want to take proper care of them. if there is anyone in the 92127 area that could look at them i would love it. also, i am not sure what type they are they were yellow, pink, red, fuscia colored flowers, does that help? on your home page of bromelaids informaiton, the top row of bromelaids are exactly like the ones i have. of coarse they need extra tlc, now becuase i have abandoned them due to ignorance, but i love their beauty and wish to revive them to full health, help!!! thanks in advance to your help
@Dee Abell – I think comments three and four a bit higher on the page might answer most of your questions. If your bromeliads have pups then you will not be able to revive the parent plant because bromeliads only bloom once in thier lifetime. Bromeliads can be forced to flower after one year of growth. Drop a small slice of tomato, apple, or any fruit into the cup. The decomposition of this fruit will release ethylene gas and induce the flowering. Good luck!
Hi, A friend gave us a pot of assorted bromeliads and we have no idea how to keep them alive. The light, the water and so on.
Can you help?
@Sheila – All of those questions and much more can be found in the archives of this site. Please take some time to read the free information provided. Thanks and good luck!
My Bromeliad plant is turning a sort of brown color. I don’t know if I over watered it or if it needs more or less sun. Please Help!