Monday, January 27, 2014

How to care for a Vriesea hybrid

There is no reason why you can't combine house decor and an appreciation for living things.  In fact, the combination can contribute to a warm and loving  environment.  This spectacular Vriesea hybrid lends just the perfect color accent in this room.  Its placement in this window allows a perfect amount of light for it: filtered sun.  

The genus Vriesea are mostly epiphytic plants, meaning they naturally grow in trees.  There are many species and hybrids of this and other bromeliads available today on the market.  These South American beauties are well worth the little devotion required to keep them healthy and thriving.

Their foliage is a lovely rosette shape and their bracts are bright and showy and come in a variety of quietly, joyous colors.  Although they look like flowers, it is their bracts that are the showpiece and the Vriesea's small blooms emanate briefly from them.  Their striking bracts will live for about three to six months.

Care Instructions:
  • Bright indirect light or some filtered sun.  A north facing window can be ideal.  
  • Water when the top of the soil media is dry.  They are usually sold in 6"pots (15 cm)  and require about 2 cups (or almost 1/2 liter) of water when necessary.   You will probably find they need water between one and two weeks.  Factors such as room temperature,  the amount of sunlight available, and how much of a root ball they have, will affect how often they need watering.  This is true for all houseplants.
  • They like a little water kept in their "cup" which is the center of the rosette.
  • They do appreciate some humidity by misting or another means but are usually quite tolerant of normal home humidity.
  • The Vriesea can be propagated from "pups" which are young plants that will start to sprout out on the outside of the rosette when they are done blooming.

*Be sure to check out a demonstration on bromeliad care from my 90's TV series at The Indoor Garden TV

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