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question about my bromelaid

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
by IdreamFree on April 12, 2005 07:57 PM
I have a bromelaid this is starting to turn brown. I do not know if it is because of the sun (was in a bay window that does get some direct morning sun), or if I am not watering/feeding it correctly. Also, do I cut off the brown leaves, or leave them on? Common sense says cut them off, but this is not a common plant. Thanks for your help.
by SharonSEVirginia on April 12, 2005 09:41 PM
Hi there!

We have many Bromeliad plants that started from one plant we received from an aunt's garden that lives in Florida where they are out year around in mostly shaded area. (We live in Virginia, and bring our Bromeliads indoors for the winter - they aren't directly in front of windows indoors - and outdoors we put them under eaves on our deck where they get very little morning sun and are shaded by other larger plants that grow between them and the sunlight in the afternoon sun. They don't do well in much direct light. I tried planting one by one of our ponds, and another in our grove that received filtered light through the trees. Their leaves didn't turn brown, but they turned a very pale, sickly looking light green and did not bloom. They don't like to be fed - that can brown the leaves. Our Bromeliads are never watered at the roots, but into a cup that the leaves form - and then we don't fill the cup to overflowing. We cut off any unsightly leaves. This plant sends out new sprouts that we cut off from the mother plant and repot - it's very easy to propagate and just needs soil to hold onto as it doesn't feed or water from it's roots anyway. I've heard you can strap their roots to a chunk of wood and water them into their cup and they'll do fine. But, I've never tried anything like that - we just put them into pots- easier to move that way. There are many Bromeliads, hopefully someone here more experienced will have some help for you.
Here's a link that you might find helpful:

Good luck!

by hurricane on January 07, 2006 04:34 PM
Thank you so much. I know what the problem is now I have it in our bedroom which has very bright sunshine always. I will move it. When will the flowers bloom again? Should I cut it back?


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trying to be a gardner
by Cricket on January 07, 2006 06:19 PM
Do you know what type of Bromeliad you have, Dream Free?

It sounds like your bromeliad is in an east window if it gets the morning sun? They do best in bright indirect light with a couple hours sun so an east facing window is a good location. Bromeliads eventually turn brown and die after completing their flowering cycle. You can remove leaves after they turn brown. If you haven't already, soon you will notice smaller green growth next to the original plant, called offsets. These new plants will eventually produce new flowers but be patient - it will take a few years before they produce blooms!

Thoroughly water the bromeliad when the top 1/4 of soil dries, evenly watering the entire soil surface until a small amount leaks through the drainage holes. Watering bromeliad cups or vases once was once advised in outdated reference books but that practice has since become discredited. Bromeliads uptake moisture through roots and unless changed frequently, water left in cups quickly becomes stagnant, smelly, and a breeding ground for bacteria.

Repotting Bromeliads is rarely necessary and offsets comfortably live in the same pot as the parent plant for a very long time.

Posting a photo of your bromeliad might be helpful in offering further suggestions.

by Cricket on January 07, 2006 06:35 PM
As you state the Bromeliad is located in a bay window, I wonder if this thread should be moved to Houseplants forum where you will get more responses?

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