The Q&A Archives: Bromeliad

Question: I have had a bromeliad for 5 + years and it has never bloomed after the year I bought it. Is there something I should be doing to get it to bloom. I water the pland in the leaves and feed it occasionally. I don't know what else to do. Please help me. Judy

Answer: As a general rule the minimum time for flowering is three years from seed or vegetative propagules (pups). If your bromeliad is mature and still not showing a flower bud, a change of environment is in order. First apply fertilizer rich in phosphorus. If this doesn't work, try placing the plant into a brighter and/or warmer spot. Should all these techniques fail to produce flowers within a year, it is time for the apple-in-the-bag trick. First pour off any water in the bromeliad cup. Obtain a fragrant ripening apple and enclose it and the bromeliad in a sealed, clear plastic bag. Keep the bagged plant out of the sun, but in a warm place. After one week remove the bag and apple and return the bromeliad to its former location. This should trigger it to bloom in time.

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