Some of My Bromeliad Collection

I haven't really shared my bromeliad collection in a while, so I suppose I'll show you how they're doing!  For those of you who didn't know, bromeliads are my favorite plants, especially the ones that can take the cold.  To the left is my neoregelia "tequila", lounging in a concrete container under my radicalis palms. 

My oak tree is where the action's at!  My bromeliads here get ample shade in the mid day and some morning and evening light.  I'm apparently OCD, so I've organized them by genus!  For example, I have my vrieseas together, with my similar looking (out of bloom anyways) nidularium rutilans nearby.  The Aechmea distichantha hybrids are together, as are the aechmea gamosepalas.  Weird, right?

I'm a little peeved at the gamosepalas today, since every single one of the low growing kind had vase rot.  Its happened before with them, and luckily they put out a new set of pups from the stolons and hopefully they'll do the same this time!

Here's a closer shot!  To the left is an aechmea distichantha, and below that is a variegated brom that I'm told has distichantha in it and is very hardy... that's what the person from the bromeliad society said anyways, though there was no label. We'll see!  (I also have an aechmea "burgundy", which isn't pictured.)  Above that is a smattering of gamosepalas, including the variegated "lucky strike".

But wait, there's more!  To the far left I have an NO ID vriesea from a bromeliad society sale, to the right of that is another NO ID that I actually got from a home depot.  I love the ripply variegation, and despite its exotic appeal, it did okay this winter with a little protection. I thought it was a vriesea fosteriana, but it has to be something else since it doesn't like the sun one bit!

Above the unidentified vrieseas is the vriecantarea "inferno" that had the amazing huge inflorescence last winter, though its died back after producing seven pups.  Two of them have been left attached, two of them I've rooted in containers, and the other three were separated today!  I'm letting the divisions callus over before potting them up individually.

Up top is another aechmea distichantha, below that and to the right is an aechmea cylindrata pup, and below that is the nidularium rutilans.  Not pictured is a larger aechmea cylindrata, billbergia pyramidalis, and a climbing neoregelia pauciflora that is growing up the trunk.

What pink fingernails you have!  The neoregelia spectabilis (also known as painted fingernail plant) are pretty tough in the cold 9a winters.  They got damaged leaves, but bounced right back!

There are actually a ton of bromeliads in this picture, but they're obscured by other plants!  I should have planned this post when i took pictures, huh?  The big one next to the elephant ears is neoregelia cruenta, though it was labeled as "sunshine".  I think its just cruenta, and that's okay as long as I keep it in that well protected spot in winter!  By the way, the elephant ears were rescued from the backyard that, while usually so swampy, is now bone dry.  There's no drainage in the pot, making it a great place to grow the colocasias!

I carved this little niche out of the deciduous gingers, so you can get a better look at my bromeliads growing on the tree fern stump.  The bromeliad crowning the tree fern stump is Vriesea phillipo coburgii, with a pup coming out from the side.  Neoregelias are planted at the base of the stump and the bottlebrush, and between them is a polypodium aureum 'blue crisp' that's already starting to climb. 

Can you believe that this is just a sampling of the bromeliads in my garden? 

For more on bromeliads...


  1. You have a terrific collection! I'll post some of mine when they color up during the winter. I have learned the hard way that Aechmeas and Neoregellias can grow in Houston. The others are iffy, but I never give up.
    David/ Tropical Texana

  2. Try the Vriesea Phillipo Coburgii! It actually NEEDS a cold winter to flower well, and they were among my hardiest this winter... in an unprotected spot!

  3. You do have a huge collection! Can't believe you organize them by genus. This brain here has to stop and think to try to remember if that one's an Aechmea or a Guzmania or a whatever, and they are scattered all over the shade garden. I love bromeliads too, with neos being my faves. Matchsticks are wonderful also, and I have recently acquired some of those. Can't wait for the first bloom! We have so many unidentified broms here in this garden, but I think I've just gotten an ID from this post. Thanks! I have a stand that looks a lot like the N. spectabilis shown in your pics. I bought them as pups right out of a local garden, and the seller didn't know the name. One less nameless plant...yay!

  4. Nice collection of broms and so organized! I will have to reference your blog to try to ID my own collection which has been growing. I have a few names but a lot of NO ID.

  5. Great collection! My Ae. distichanthas do their best in full sun (more compact and stiffer foliage). Too bad about the Ae. gamosepalas. They're just ready to come into bloom this month!

  6. Hi Steve...You have a nice "growing" collection of broms. You just can't beat a tree surrounded by a variety of them.

  7. Hi Steve,
    You are definitely the bromeliad expert. You have so many and they are all so pretty.

    I have loads of them but don't have any idea of the names of most. I think I take them for granted as great ground covers that I don't have to give any extra care to and for that I am VERY grateful. I've started using them more and more in container gardens for the same reason... no additional water and they take care of themselves.

  8. Your Bromeliads look good. Sometimes I group together the Vriesias as they are most susceptible
    to root rot in a wet place. Do you grow also Tillandsias and Earthstars? I could not imagine my garden without Bromeliads. I like it how you have grouped them around the tree.

  9. Floridagirl:
    Well, they're not all organized by genus, but the ones under the tree are for the most part. Oh, and neo. spectabilis is one of the toughest broms I know! I like them in sun or in shade, and they are one of the better ones for sun in my garden.

    I can't wait til they've had a couple years of growth!

    I'll probably have to make a post one of these days that lists every one of my bromeliads, and info about them... that would also make for an easy reference for myself, since I have a lot to keep up with, AND I can keep track of which ones die and why.

    Grower Jim:
    I saw what was left of the emerging flower spikes in the rotted vases... it was devastating! Maybe my little clump is weak and I need to find some new dna. Oh, and I put the distichanthas against the tree since they're larger and so I never have to deal with their spikes... well, at least unless I'm dividing or renovating.

    It will probably be time to expant the bed outward soon...

    I wouldn't say 'expert'! I do think there's a lack of info on the cold tolerant kinds though, and I do hope to share more on them as I learn. Broms really are the toughest plants you could ask for, and they look gorgeous as groundcovers, especially where you live!

    Good to know on the vrieseas, and I'll keep that in mind! I do have a fair amount of tillies on my balcony, and a few earth stars too! Here's a link to a post with cryptanthus...

  10. Very cool... I've always been a bit intimidated by these guys...

  11. Amazing collection of Brom's! I have always been intimidated by them. Not sure why. It is very hot and dry where I live so not sure they would do well. I think that is why I am a succulents freak! Thanks for the great pics!


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