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How To Grow Beautiful Bromeliads Inside and Outside In The Yard

Mary enjoys gardening and growing unusual species that have spectacular coloring and is also easy to grow.

Bromeliads blooming in my garden.

Bromeliads blooming in my garden.

The Bromeliad is one of my favorite flowering plants. It is so easy to grow, care for and transplant. I had never grown this plant until one day about three years ago, as I was driving along the road; I spotted some men dumping plants on the side of the road for the trash collector. I stopped and inquired what they were doing. One of the yard men said they had been instructed to clean out the bed of Bromeliads in the owner’s yard, because they were too thick. I could see some of these green broad leafed plants had very pretty red spiked blossoms.

I was fascinated by these beautiful plants that were doomed. With the work men's permission, I quickly began to load as many of the plants into my trunk that I could.

After I got the plants home, I really didn't know what to do with them or where or how to plant them. I called a friend of mine who knows much more about plants than I do to come and look at my haul. She told me they were Bromeliads. She had some in her garden, but would like some more. She asked if she could have a few of the ones I rescued. Of course, I’d be happy to share. She took about 15 plants and left me with the rest which was about 25 plants. She stayed that day and showed me how to place the Bromeliads in my yard. The yard men had just pulled the plants right out of the ground, leaving very little roots. “Don’t worry about that,” she said, as she laid the plants on top of the ground. She got some potting soil and just barely covered the plant’s root system (or what was left of the root system). We did not even dig holes for the plants. I stood in wonder, thinking these plants would never grow. I was wrong about that. None of these plants died as a result of this handling . After a year or so, I found myself thinning out my bed of Bromeliads and looking for friends that wanted to share.

Bromeliads multiply very fast. A little “pup” will appear at the base of the plant, and that cycle repeats until you have many, many plants.

A Pretty Color Of Bromeliad

Bromeliads are quite colorful.

Bromeliads are quite colorful.

The Bromeliad Has Foliage Of Many Shapes And Colors

The foliage of a Bromeliad can have many different shapes, from needle thin to broad and flat, symmetrical to irregular, spiky and soft. Leaf colors range from maroon, through shades of green, to gold. Varieties may have leaves with red, yellow, white and cream variegations. Others may be spotted with purple, red, or cream, while others have different colors on the tops and bottoms of the leaves. If the Bromeliad never bloomed, just the foliage alone would be enough to make me love this plant.

Some flowers have flower spikes that may reach 10 to 12 inches tall while others only measure 2 to 3 inches across. Upright stalks may be branched or simple with spikes retaining their color from two weeks up to twelve months, depending on species. In some species the flower grows deep in the base of the plants, and is almost unseen. The blooms on my Bromeliads last for about three weeks. I have several different varieties in my yard. One is a pinkish color and is the kind that tiny little white flowers grow deep in the base. The other type has the broad green variegated colored leaves that bloom with the spike.

Bromeliads Under A Tree

These Bromeliads multiply and grow under a tree in my yard.

These Bromeliads multiply and grow under a tree in my yard.

A Bromeliad In Bloom

This is a beautiful red bloom on one of my Bromeliads.

This is a beautiful red bloom on one of my Bromeliads.

The Same Bromeliad With The Spike Bloom

This spike is now 29 inches tall, and still growing.

This spike is now 29 inches tall, and still growing.

Other Bromeliads In My Yard

These photos capture the many different kinds of foliage and blooms on the Bromeliads in my garden.

These photos capture the many different kinds of foliage and blooms on the Bromeliads in my garden.

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Note the tiny pink blossoms in the middle

Note the tiny pink blossoms in the middle

Just A Fun Tree Ornament

I enjoy this fun tree ornament!

I enjoy this fun tree ornament!

I Mounted A Bromeliad On A Piece Of Driftwood

I mounted this Bromeliad in a piece of driftwood.  I used a piece of screening to hold the plant in place.

I mounted this Bromeliad in a piece of driftwood. I used a piece of screening to hold the plant in place.

Bromeliads Can Be Mounted On A Tree

Water collects down inside the Bromeliad. In fact, my friend advised me not to water the soil around the plants, but rather, place water into the “throat” of the plant. I have seen tiny little tree frogs living inside the Bromeliad.

I mounted a Bromeliad on a piece of driftwood that is supported by a piece of screening. It has NO soil, but thrives and blooms.

These plants seem to like warmer dry climates, in Central America, the southern United States, and Arizona. They thrive here in Florida.

We do have some cold weather here. It can get down in the 30's for short periods of time, but my Bromeliads have never died from the cold. I don't think they could survive in the northern part of the United States, though. They don't mind sandy soil such as I have. I grow most plants in containers because of my poor soil. I have to say, Bromeliads are a pretty tough plant!

When you first see the Bromeliad’s bud, it is such a thrill. You can watch it day by day as the spike gets taller and taller and it becomes a full bloom.

The most common mistake people make is over watering. It is often assumed that because Bromeliads are tropical, they need a lot of water all of the time. It is true that many bromeliads like humidity, but they do not like their feet wet. If the soil remains constantly wet, the roots will likely rot, ultimately killing the plant. To avoid this problem allow the potting media to dry before adding more water to the throat of the plant. Even if it appears dry on top, it may be retaining water farther underneath the surface. Stick your finger into the pot or ground and check a few inches down to make sure the potting media feels dry. If you are unsure, err on the side of not having enough water. Most bromeliads can tolerate drought. They will not thrive and grow in consistent drought, but they are less likely to die of drought than rotting.

Bromeliads Growing Under A Large Tree

These Bromeliads grow and multiply underneath this large tree.  They do like to be in the shade.

These Bromeliads grow and multiply underneath this large tree. They do like to be in the shade.

The Bromeliad From The Dish Garden

I took this Bromeliad from a dish garden and planted it outside where it continues to grow and bloom.

I took this Bromeliad from a dish garden and planted it outside where it continues to grow and bloom.

The Bromeliad Can Be Grown Inside The House

About three months ago, I purchased a dish garden and it had an Orchid and a Bromeliad in it. I transplanted the Orchid into an Orchid pot, and the Bromeliad was planted directly into the ground. The Bromeliad is now very big and will soon have “pups”

I have discovered that the Bromeliad can be grown inside the house with some considerations:

Bromeliad’s roots act as anchors and do not grow very large. A small pot, between four and six inches will be large enough to hold a single Bromeliad. Using a pot that is too large for a Bromeliad will result in the potting media retaining too much water and the Bromeliad will suffer the same consequences as overwatering. The roots are likely to rot causing the plant to die. When you plant a bromeliad pup, or offset, in a small pot, you may need to stake the pup until it has developed sufficient roots to remain upright on its own.

If you want to grow a Bromeliad indoors, don’t use regular potting soil because that might hold too much moisture. Instead, use a soil-less mixture that will allow drainage in the pot. This mixture usually can be found in garden centers and plant nurseries.

Whether you grow Bromeliads indoors or outdoors, you will be rewarded by beautiful flowers. You can find these plants in almost all garden centers and nurseries. The ones you often find for sale are the broad leafed green plant that blooms a red spike like most of mine are.

If you see a house with lots of Bromeliads growing, you can probably ask the homeowner for some plants. Chances are they would love to share, as all gardeners love to share their plants for others to enjoy. Just ask.

How To Grow Bromeliads

How To Harvest Pups From Bromeliads

If you would like to learn more about Bromeliads, visit the site of the Bromeliad Society.

Almost all states have their own Bromeliad Society.


More of my Hubs on plants and gardening

These are more Hubs I have written about plants and gardening that you may enjoy reading.

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    If you are looking for a fast growing vine to cover a fence and have beautiful blossoms all summer long, the Rangoon Creeper is a good choice. The one I planted a year ago has almost covered the chain link fence I had installed in my front yard to pr

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© 2012 Mary Hyatt

Comments

John Hansen from Gondwana Land on January 25, 2016:

This is a great hub about bromeliads. There are so many different varieties and I have about four of them. Great photos too and videos. Hope you are recovering well Mary.

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on February 15, 2015:

Hi, vocalcoach Thanks for the nice compliment on my photos. You can't go wrong planting Bromeliads. It would be nice if you have a friend who already has them growing in their yard so you don't have to buy them. I love Bromedliads because they spread and make more beautiful flowers!

Thanks so much for reading, commenting, the votes and the share. Mary

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on February 15, 2015:

Hi, pstraubie48 When I had to give up my home of 35 years, I didn't want to leave my Bromeliads behind, so I called all the neighbors and told them to come and help themselves. They were thrilled. I had so many beauties.

Thanks so much for reading, commenting, the votes, the share and the Pin, I appreciate that.

I hope you had a nice Valentine's Day, Mary

Audrey Hunt from Pahrump NV on February 14, 2015:

Oh, what gorgeous photos! I have just the spot for planting these beautiful Bromeliads. Will wait for April to come around then I'll get to work. I love hubs that introduce me to flowers. Voted up +++ and sharing. Thanks Mary!

Patricia Scott from North Central Florida on February 14, 2015:

Beautiful beautiful.. I have shared bromeliads too as they are a favorite of mine.

They are such a gorgeous plant...and so many colors and variety make them spectacular.

Lovely photos.

Shared and voted up Pinned

Angels are on the way to you this afternoon Happy Valentine's Day to you... ps

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on August 12, 2014:

Hi, rebeccamealey Thank you very much. Yes, the Bromeliad blooms many different colors and sizes. That's one reason I enjoy growing them so much. They are very rewarding. Thanks for reading and commenting, Mary

Rebecca Mealey from Northeastern Georgia, USA on August 12, 2014:

These are just beautiful! I didn't realize there was so many different looking bromeliads!

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on August 12, 2014:

Hi, Au fait Yes, these plants will multiply like crazy, and you find you have many to share with friends. They have such interesting blooms, too.

I love them because they are so easy to grow. They require little maintenance.

Thanks so much for the votes and the shares, I appreciate that, Mary

C E Clark from North Texas on August 12, 2014:

Beautiful photos and great information. I didn't know about these flowers before and they sound easy to raise. Voted this up, BUI, pinned to my 'Pink II' board, posted on FB, and will share.

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on April 19, 2014:

Hi, Peggy

I am so glad I moved my Bromeliads to my new apartment. Thanks so much for thinking of this Hub on the other site. Thanks for Pinning this, too.

I hope you and Hubby have a happy Easter!

My best, Mary

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on April 18, 2014:

Hi Mary,

Now you know why I wrote on that other site about seeing bromeliads and reminding me of you. :) Pinning this again to Awesome HubPages this time. Hope you have a wonderful Easter!

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on January 25, 2014:

Hi, Nell Rose Thank for the revisit and for the votes and share. I appreciate that. I have since moved from my big house, but I took my Bromeliads with me to my new apartment. They don't mind being moved around at all. My best, Mary

Nell Rose from England on January 23, 2014:

Came back for another read mary, and yes they are so beautiful, I think we need to look at this beautiful plants at this time of year, voted up and shared, nell

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on November 30, 2013:

Hi, prasetio30 I'm happy you like my Hub on Bromeliads. Thanks for such a nice compliment.

Thanks for the votes, too. My best, Mary

prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on November 30, 2013:

I am so happy reading this hub. Wow..you have great tips here. Very well written and I love all pictures here...Bromeliads..beautiful...Voted up :-)

Prasetio

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on November 29, 2013:

Hi, Peggy W Yes, the daughter loves flowers and especially the bromeliads!

Thanks so much for sharing and tweeting! Glad you like my photos, too. My best, Mary

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on November 29, 2013:

Am sure your daughter is happy to have some of these gorgeous bromeliads now growing at her place. Will share again and also tweet. This is such a good hub with beautiful photos!

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on June 16, 2013:

Hi Thelma Alberts. The Bromeliad is one of those plants that once you plant it, you can just forget it. They require no care to speak of. They multiply pretty fast, too.

I'm sure the Bromediad would grow very well in the Phillippines, as they are a tropical plant. I do hope you will put some in your beautiful garden.

Thanks for reading, commenting, sharing and for the Pin. I do appreciate that.

I look forward to seeing you again, Mary

Thelma Alberts from Germany on June 16, 2013:

Wow! Those photos are awesome, Mary. I think I have seen this plant in my home country before although I don´t have one in my garden. I would love to have Bromeliad plants. This flower is added to my "to plant" list.

Thanks for sharing. Now I know more about them. Voted up, shared and pinned.

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on May 13, 2013:

Hi Peggy W. What a nice thing to do: to come back to share and Pin. Thanks for the compliment on my photos!

When I move from my present house I plan to take many of my Bromeliads with me to my daughter's house, and of course I'll share with my neighbors, too.

Goodnight, Mary

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on May 13, 2013:

Hi Mary,

This beautiful hub deserves another share and am going to pin this. Your photos are wonderful!

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on April 02, 2013:

Hi miget38. Oh, yes, finally.....spring is here! Our weather is warm almost year round, but as soon as the ground begins to warm up, the plants all get happy (just like me), and start to grown again.

Thanks so much for reading, and the sharing. Mary

Michelle Liew from Singapore on April 01, 2013:

Now that the season of growth is here, this hub is apt. Sharing!

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on March 03, 2013:

Hi Sherry Hewins. Thank you for your nice compliment on my photos. I am going to ask Santa for a better digital camera this year so I could do a better job of photographing my flowers.

Thank you for reading and Pinning, Mary

Sherry Hewins from Sierra Foothills, CA on March 03, 2013:

The photos are beautiful. I'm pinning this one.

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on February 03, 2013:

Hi, anuramkumar. Thanks for reading and for the nice compliment. The Bromeliad is truly a beautiful plant and if it is warm in your part of India, I'll bet they would grow there.

Good night, Mary

anuramkumar from Chennai, India on February 03, 2013:

Wow...these plants look so adorable and lovely. Excellent snaps!

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on December 15, 2012:

Hi, Eddy. Great seeing you today! Bet it's cold where you are, huh? Thanks so much for reading, the votes and the share.

Hope you are having a wonderful day, Mary

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on December 15, 2012:

Hi, Bumpsymum, So nice to "meet you" here today. I'm glad you do have one Bromeliad and can enjoy it indoors. Oh, my, I don't think I could endure your cold temperature. I complain when we go down in the fiftys!

Thanks for the nice compliment on my Hub, Mary

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on December 15, 2012:

Hi there, Sunnie. Hope you are having a wonderful day. Unless it gets really cold where you live the Bromeliad would probably do just fine. Why don't you get just one to start with and plant it?

I'm a great one for picking up stuff on the side of the road that was to thrown away, too.

I'd love to know how you do with growing a Bromeliad.

Hope you have a wonderful Holiday Season, Hugs back to you, Mary

Mary Hyatt (author) from Florida on December 15, 2012:

Hi Cathy Fidelibus. So nice to see you. Thanks for reading and I do hope I have inspired you to grow Bromeliads. In your cold climate, you would probably have to grow them in the house until the cold weather leaves.

Thanks for the vote and the share, I appreciate that so much, Mary

Bumpsysmum from Cambridgeshire on December 15, 2012:

I love Bromeliads, unfortunately our climate is not conducive to raising them out of doors. I don't have a heated greenhouse and little or no window sills. Woe is me, I hear you say? Really, I have just one and it flowers every year but I have to be careful to move it out of the draught in the depth of winter, last year we had -18C for a week and even by the window it was cold!

You are so lucky.

Great Hub though, very informative.

Sunnie Day on December 15, 2012:

Hi Mary,

I love plants that come back every year or are easy to transplant. The Bormeliads are so pretty and look very hearty. I may have to see how they would do here in central Texas. Thank you for a great hub and sharing about this beautiful plant. I had to giggle I am known for picking up plants that are thrown away, trying to grow them too..:)