Bromeliad Flower – Removing Flowers After They Fade

Old flower of Guzmania bromeliad

Question: My Guzmania bromeliad is done blooming. How should I care for it? Patricia, Georgia

Answer: Patricia, a few months have probably past since you got your Guzmania bromeliad.

The “flower” I’m sure was beautiful and added color in the right spot. Indoors, I get about 4, sometimes 5 months of color out of my guzmanias. That is one of the reasons I like the bromeliad for indoor color.

Your timing is perfect as I have a guzmania just about ready to “remove” its bloom.

You’ve held on as long as you could and now, the flower is fading, in fact it is getting ugly and some of the tips of the foliage could be starting to turn brown. So let’s answer your question: “The guzmania bloom is gone, what do I do now with the plant?”

Let’s first add some additional Questions You Need Answers To:

  • Do I Cut The Bromeliad Flower Off?
  • Will The Bromeliad Die
  • Will The Bromeliad Bloom Again?

Do I Cut The Bromeliad Flower Off?

The answer is Yes. The plant has finished its course and no matter what you try you’re not going to be able to make the flower “hang on”. The bromeliad varieties we specifically are focused on are aechmeas, guzmanias and Vrieseas.

Take a sharp knife or a pair of your favorite pruning shears and cut off the bloom spike as far down as you can. You may not have any color but you can keep growing your bromeliad plant.
Old flower of Guzmania bromeliad with leaves cut away

Leaves and flower removed from the plant, allows the new “pups” to develop.

Old flower and leaves of Guzmania bromeliad removed

Will The Bromeliad Die?

You can keep growing your plant just as you have in the past. It probably is a good time to give the leaves a cleaning with some clean water and a soft cloth.

new bromeliad pup developing

The plant over time will begin to put out new plants or what we call “pups” from the base. These pups should remain on the parent plant until they reach a approximately 1/3 the size of the parent – I like to leave mine longer.

Now is also a good time to move the plant into some brighter light if possible.

Will The Bromeliad Bloom Again?

The plant will never bloom again for the original plant. The new “pups” will grow up and they can flower if given enough care and light. They plant in the pictures bloomed once on the original and twice from pups. The plant is still in the same soil – 3 years later.

Remember, most of the bromeliads produced today never grow to their full size. When the plants reach about 3/4 their full size they are “treated” or forced to flower and shipped out.

The treating is simply a gas such as ethylene (which is given off by ripening fruit) that will force the plant to induce a bloom.

Bromeliads are wonderful plants for indoor use that can add color to any interior. Sooner or later as B.B. King sang “The Thrill is Gone” and the flowers must go, but the plants can still live on and provide you with indoor green.

Tips To Improve Your Plant Care
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