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Guzmania

Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
guz-MAY-nee-uh
Description

Bromeliad is an indoor, herbaceous perennial in the Bromeliaceae (pineapple) family and native to Florida and tropical America. It grows up to 3 feet in height and 2 in width and has long, strap-like, green leaves with showy, colorful bracts that surround their flowers. 

Bromeliad needs full sun, dry soil with good drainage, and medium relative humidity. Plant using a mixture designed for bromeliads or make your own with ingredients such as peat moss, vermiculite, and bark. Water directly into the central cup of the plant, allowing the soil to dry completely after watering. As an epiphyte, this plant requires nearly no water at its base, but its central case must be kept full of water, which should be replaced periodically. Offsets will appear at the base after the bloom fades and can be removed and started as new plants as the mother plant will soon fade and die. Fertilize by spraying half-strength orchid fertilizer on the leaves in spring or summer and only one to two times per year. 

This plant is desired for its beautiful, long-lasting, torch-like inflorescence with showy bright red bracts.  The actual flowers are white and quite small. The inflorescence along with the untoothed, unmarked leaves help to differentiate this genus from Aechmea, Neoregelia, and Vriesia.

Use this plant as a houseplant or grow it in a container that can be brought indoors when temperatures cool.

Quick ID Hints:

  • Leaves are entire and generally unmarked
  • Inflorescence is torch-like at the end of the flower scape

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems: No significant problems.

VIDEO Created by Elisabeth Meyer for "Edibles, Bulbs, and Houseplants" a plant identification course offered in partnership with Longwood Gardens.   

Profile Video:
See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
G. lingulata, G. musaica
Tags:
#showy flowers#houseplant#perennials#white flowers#red flowers#epiphytic#interiorscape#herbaceous#fantz#indoor#ebh#ebh-h#tropical feel#container plant#hsc#hsc-fl
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
G. lingulata, G. musaica
Tags:
#showy flowers#houseplant#perennials#white flowers#red flowers#epiphytic#interiorscape#herbaceous#fantz#indoor#ebh#ebh-h#tropical feel#container plant#hsc#hsc-fl
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Guzmania
    Family:
    Bromeliaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Florida to Tropical America
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 6 in. - 3 ft. 3 in.
    Width: 0 ft. 6 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Epiphyte
    Herbaceous Perennial
    Houseplant
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Erect
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    10a, 10b, 11a, 11b, 12a, 12b
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Orange
    Pink
    Red/Burgundy
    White
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Funnel
    Flower Petals:
    Bracts
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Flowers are many, white or yellow, and small the inflorecence can be up to 6 inches long with bracts of bright red, orange, pink, or green and are crowded at scape terminus. The inflorescence is a terminal, scapose, and is simple or bipinnate. Bracts are arranged in a torch-like arrangement with flowers in many rows in the center.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    White
    Leaf Feel:
    Leathery
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Up to 20-inch leaves are in a basal rosette, overlapping to form a funnel-like central 'vase'. Simple, stiff, strap-shaped, entire, and have a generally unmarked surface with parallel venation. Offsets may form between the base leaves. Color may change towards the center of the funnel.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Houseplants