bromeliads to propogate?????

baton rouge, LA(Zone 9a)

Hey there!!! My spelling could be wrong but the question plant had a baby and I apparently need to separate the two. Baby is becoming too dependent and Mommy is having a nervous breakdown. I've never done this before and so I need a little advice. They have been living on a piece of driftwood on my deck and I would like the baby to return to it and send Mommy on a long needed vacation.How should I take care of the baby?????? I'm trying to avoid SIDS. Any help would be appreciated. Pixiedust (AKA..nervous new mother)

Ventura, United States(Zone 10b)

I think you are supposed to sever the baby from the mother plant when the baby is about half the size of the mother, but I am not a Bromeliad expert by any means. I do know that there is special Bromeliad fertilizer that you can use. You fill up the vase of the plant with the fertilizer solution. Here's a link:

baton rouge, LA(Zone 9a)

Thanks Clare .....I'll check that sight now. Pixiedust

Gulfport, MS(Zone 8a)

Pixiedust, I grow lots of bromeliads, and I think they are the least fussy plant I have. I just cut into the plant when I am ready to divide, usually leaving some still in the original pot. I do not water in the "vase" even though all the books say you should cause I find that they rot; a lady from the nursury told me this, but I had to find out for myself, and it did rot. I spray mine down with miracle grow from time to time, probably monthly during the spring and summer. They like a bright light, but not direct sunlight. And do not water until it is dry. That is how it works in my climate, and it may be different in your climate.

Eunice, MO(Zone 5b)

What does half the size of the mother refer to when deciding to separate pup from mom? Are you talking diameter or height? Will mom do better if pup is removed early or does mom care? My pups are taller than mom but really have no measuable diameter.

Gainesville, FL

Mommy is "having a nervous breakdown" because, she is destined to die. The mother plant almost ALWAYS dies when the new pups come out and start growing...that is where the new pups get their energy TO grow, from the failing mother plant.

You do not need to fertilize your plant, especially now in the middle of winter. You just need to let nature take its course.

Unless you have specific plans for the new pup (trading it, giving it away etc), there is absolutely NO reason to separate it from the mother plant at all. It will be much happier and grow much faster if you just leave it alone, and remove the expired mama when that time comes

Eunice, MO(Zone 5b)

Thank you. My only plan at the moment for the pups is to watch them grow. If Mom is a lost cause from here then I will not mess with mother nature. She gets real testy sometimes when you do that. It is an 8 inch pot and Mom has 4 pups on her. They should be fine from what I read on space requirements. I will let them mature naturally.

el arish, FNQ, Australia

We just depupped a bunch of broms and almost immediately they started repupping. Some with three or four shoots. Is this generally true? Will depupping increase the amount of pups you'll get before the momma plant dies? Ann

Tampa, FL(Zone 10a)

Interesting thread....

Thumbnail by DaleTheGardener
Gainesville, FL

How many threads are you going to post that same photo on, Dale, LOL?

Marks, MS(Zone 7b)

I have a bromeliad that has put out pups every year for about 3 years now. and her pups have put out pups more then once also. Every spring I cut the pups off and repot them. I also repot the mom. The mom dosent look too well when I do this, but, I trim her and cut off all the bad looking stuff. For some reason, it also seems that every year the new pups get bigger and bigger then the original plant when they are full grown. the moms have even rebloomed for me. one little plant has turned into about 85 that are planted together in HUGE pots (not all of them in one pot, but as many as I can fit in each pot). Sadly, I can't seem to let any of my "babies" go. I wonder how many will fit in my greenhouse along with all my other

Coffs Harbour, Australia

Sometimes, when you remove the pups from the mother plant, if the weather is still warm and the mother plant is still looking good, you might get another batch of pups. These may not mature enough to be removed before the cool weather sets in, and in this case, it would be better to wait until late spring before removing them and growing them on. A little fertiliser added to the potting mix after separation, might help to encourage a few more pups from the mother plant.
As Goth has said before, it's not nessecary to remove the pups (unless you want to have more individual plants), as the container and soil size is not an issue with MOST bromeliads, because alot of them are epiphytical and can grow in crevices in rocks (as in Dales photo) and forks in trees. A pot brimming over with flowering bromeliads is a wonderful sight.
lismil's pups have probably outgrown the size of the mother because they have recieved more space to spread out, and possibly less competition for nutrients from the soil. (would love some pictures lismil)
Alot of the Neoregelias achieve a higher level of colour if they are not too well fertilised, but when trying to get more pups, you may have to forgo the colour intensity in favour of fertilising for reproduction. These plants are also well known for having an open habit, and if allowed to pup up, they may lose the nice shape acheived when grown individually.
You can see on this mini Neoregelia 'Bucaneer' that the new pups are beginning to push the leaves out of shape. Personally, I don't care! lOL

Thumbnail by weed_woman

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