How to Successfully Propagate Bromeliads
Bromeliads are a plant wonder which can create wonder. I have worked with these garden beauties over the years and to be honest with you bromeliads are worth the investment. The bromeliad family is very huge in fact there are some 2, 700 species of bromeliads with their individual beauty and uniqueness.
If you are looking for hardy type plants with an array of amazing colors then look no further bromeliads are the plant for you. Bromeliads can both be grown out and indoors to give that color pop. I have seen first hand what they can do when they are incorporated into a garden design.
My success story
As an interior plantscape designer, I have had much success creating many garden designs where I worked at a five-star resort many years ago. Some of the plant materials that were used to create these awesome designs were bromeliads that added so much color and beauty to those drab areas. I remember another success story a few years ago, our international airport was about to have its ground opening, and management wanted everything to be spectacular because it was to be such a grand occasion.
I was called upon along with other team members to create a beautiful design in the domestic terminal. This would be a design that would receive so many compliments when it was all completed, we really give it our best transforming that entire area with these garden beauties.
What I also love about bromeliads is that the parent plant produces baby plants that shoot from the side which we call pups. These pups can be separated from the parent to produce a beautiful plant and once this plant reaches maturity it too becomes a parent plant producing pups that transform into a thing of beauty. This process can happen over and over again with these plants which are so cool, with that said let’s dive into the mix of things as we propagate these garden wonders.
Bromeliad Propagation Methods
Things you must know
Before you begin this process you will need
1. A work station that is leveled.
2. A sharp clean hand pruner.
3. Garden Gloves.
4. Several six-inch growers pots depending on the number of pups that are to be propagated.
5. A good potting soil mix that is weed-free or doesn’t have any weed seeds.
6. Orchid barks
7. A gallon of pure clean water.
1. Before removing the pup from the parent ensure that it is about 6 inches or larger with some roots attached because this will give the pup a better chance of survival.
2. Remove the parent plant from the pot and place it on the table
3. Grip the parent plant a bit firmly and with the pruner being very, very careful make the incision or cut where the pup or babies is joined to the parent, as you make the cut some roots should be attached to the base or side of the pup.
Or what you can do again is grab the pup a bit firmly and with a little force where the pup is joined to the parent plant pull in a downward position until the pup breaks away. Remember with this process to also have some roots that are attached for a better chance of survival.
4. Once the pups are removed half the potting soil and the orchid bark.
5. Place this mixture in your container or grower’s pot. This mixture should fall several inches below the top or rim of the pot.
6. Next, with one of your hands scope out from the center a few inches of the potting mix and place your plant in the center. Ensure that the entire root system is buried but be careful because what you don’t want is to bury any of the leaves just the part that was joined to the parent along with the roots should be under the soil. Every other part should be above the soil.
7. Return the soil that was scoped out of the middle and gently press it around the base of your pup this light packing of the soil will help to stabilize your plant.
8. Once your plant has been stabilized give it a good drink of water, make sure that the container has holes to allow the water to drain because if the water does not find a way to escape your plants will rot which is not good.
9. The soil should be somewhat moist because this is a very crucial time for the pups to develop a healthy root system and moisture plays a big part so keep an eye on the soil. Once your bromeliads develop a strong root system and have grown somewhat you can decrease the amount of watering.
10. Fertilizing is optional because I have seen bromeliads growing healthy without the use of fertilizers. But if you what you can feed your plant with a liquid feed of Triple twenty or some other liquid feed fertilizer will do. Before using fertilizers read and follow the manufacturer’s label because the label is the law.
Where to use bromeliads
Here a few ideas where to install your bromeliads
- Bromeliads look great as part of a rock garden design
- Can be installed in other garden designs, placing the taller species in the middle and the shorter species at the front.
- Bromeliads can be installed in six-inch or three-gallon containers and placed as a centerpiece on pieces of furniture such as coffee tables, stands, and other designer tables on your patio in your living room, the kitchen table, and other pieces of furniture. Ensure that the containers have saucers to collect the water that may drain after you give it a drink.
- The taller bromeliads can be installed in larger decorative containers and placed in the corner of your room. These containers can also be placed on either side of your front door entrance
Growing bromeliads from trees
Bromeliads can be grown from trees, this was a project that we took on a few years ago installing these garden beauties on several royal palms. What we did was remove the bromeliads from the grower’s pots rap the root ball in the husk from the coconut and with fishing line attached them to a few royal palms that were growing in the palm garden.
This was a pretty amazing sight that looked all-natural. The colorful leaves gave that much-needed color as it really softens up and highlighted that area. What we did was give them water as needed. This is a great idea which will really work wonders.
The final word
Bromeliads are great to have both out and indoors. There is no shortage when it comes to your choice of these garden beauties. So why not spruce up your garden area to give that color pop or bring them on the indoors where you can enjoy their beautiful display as they add life with their charm. With that said let’s get started and give that much-needed color pop.