Guzmania, the tropical plant

Guzmania, the tropical plant

Guzmania is an ornamental indoor plant which will add tropical flourish to any home, porch, or office. Decorates with style and gives an exotic and tropic touch to any place. These plants will bring a bit of color to a dark corner and they are of the easiest houseplants to look after.

It is an evergreen plant relating to the pineapple family which requires low light, warm temperatures and high humidity and its origin is from the tropical forests of South America. The plant is named after the person who discovered it, Spaniard Antonino Guzman. He was a pharmacist, botanist and collector of historic items. The first species were imported into Europe in around 1900.

Guzmania belongs to epiphytic plants meaning they use their roots to attach to a tree rather than grow in the ground. For this reason, the ideal location for guzmania is a greenhouse, a closed flower showcase, or tree trunks, where it can be hooked, like a canopy. Guzmania lingulata is one of the most popular species. Its common name is “the scarlet star”.

Characteristics

Leaves are stiff, green, mostly linear in a basal rosette but not as spiny as other species.

Flowers are borne mostly in spike-type inflorescences that do not protrude significantly above the leaves.

It has long leaves and from its base it emerges a long stem that is not actually blooming but bracing leaves. These bristle leaves are bright in color and create a wonderful contrast to the surrounding green classical leaves of the plant.

They are even kept for several months, much more, and they keep their own flowers. Its true flowers are the small yellow flowers that lie between the bristle leaves. Their color varies. It can be red, yellow, pink, orange or even burgundy and even two-color.

Plant is classed as a monocotyledon, with leaves mostly parallel veined.

Flowers are not fragrant.

Flowering

Most bromeliads flower only once in their lifetime. The brightly colored leaves that are often mistaken for flowers are actually called bracts, a leaf-like structure from which an inflorescence may grow. A bromeliad grows by added new leaves to the center of the plant. At some point, the center will become crowded and new leaves will no longer have room to form. At this point, the bromeliad will focus its energy on producing pups, also known as offsets. The bloom on a bromeliad can last several months and the colorful bracts even longer.

Guzmania start to die, in summer, after it has produced its flowers, of which new plants can easily be produced, depending on the prevailing conditions. If you want to multiply it, you will know that the base of the plant is formed by swaths, which you can detach and transplant. Flowering will come after about two years.

Enjoy guzmania plant for long time by following these simple steps:

·      Provide bright light without direct sun exposure

·      Maintain optimal humidity

·      Keeps air flow

·      Make sure the plants stay moist but not soggy

·      Drainage adequate

·      Fertilize sparingly

Potting

The kind of potting can directly affect the moisture levels of guzmania plant. Plastic pots tend to hold moisture for a longer period of time. If you are living in a dry area, you may want to consider a plastic container to house your plant in. Unglazed clay pots are porous and allow water to seep out. If you are living in a very humid area, you may want to consider this type of container so your plant doesn’t stay overly wet. Regardless the type of container, never use soil when potting your guzmania plant. It is too dense and will not allow for the quick drainage that bromeliads require. Instead, use potting mixes specially formulated for bromeliads or mix your own using porous materials.

Light

Guzmanias, like all bromeliads, can’t handle direct sunlight, which will damage their leaves.  A window with bright indirect light is a good choice. However, they may need a south-facing window in winter, when light levels are lower. A clear shade or blind can help control excess light.

Temperature

To develop properly, it needs a warm environment. The temperature of the room to be accommodated should be room temperature, from 18 °C to 25 °C. In winter the temperature should not be below 18 °C and in the summer it should not exceed 27 °C.

Humidity

Like most indoor plants, guzmania prefers moderate to high humidity environment. The soil of the plant must be moist but not so as to cause fungus and bacteria. To help with good drainage, place a few pebbles at the bottom of your pot.

Be careful not to let the soil become too dry.

Watering

As a indoor plant it needs moderate watering once a week and spraying with warm water on its leaves, especially in the summer. Perfectly use rainwater, distilled water or filtered water for guzmanias. Tap water often contains minerals as well as chlorine and fluoride. The water should be room temperature – remember these plants are from the tropics. Water the guzmania at the center of the rosette. It is good to have a drain saucer on the base to remove excess water otherwise you could end up damaging the plant.

Fertilizer

Bromeliads in general are relatively slow-growing. Don’t give your guzmanias too much fertilizer, as it can make them leggy and decrease their vibrant colors. Choose a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer and use it every two weeks in the growing period. At the end of summer, place slow-release fertilizer pellets around the base of the plants – never in the plants central or “tank.”

Guzmania grow slowly, so there’s no need to prune or shape and generally is a disease free plant.

Guzmania is one of the most impressive and resistant plants and along with other indoor plants can create beautiful arrangements. At anthemionflowers.eu you can find this stunning guzmania plant in various colors and sizes to choose the perfect one for your loved ones or even for your own place.