Native to Central and South America, the bromeliad is a large and diverse family that includes Spanish moss and pineapples. Few plant families surpass the variation in shapes, sizes and foliage colours found in bromeliads. Most bromeliads grow as houseplants or container plants that spruce up the spot with their magnificent colour and shapes. Pink bromeliads such as the pink quill require about the same type of care as the rest of this tropical plant family.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Curtain (optional)
- Humidifier or saucer with rocks
- Liquid houseplant fertiliser
- Sharp knife
- Shallow pot
- Potting soil
- Dishwashing detergent
- Spray bottle
Place the pink bromeliad in a spot exposed to indirect, bright light or filtered sunlight. The leaves of the plant may turn pale green or yellow if exposed to direct light, or deep green and elongated when exposed to excessive light. Adjust the lighting by hanging a light curtain over the window near the potted pink bromeliad or placing it under a covered patio outdoors.
Maintain the temperature above 15.6 degrees Celsius for the pink bromeliads and humidity at 40 to 60 per cent. Install a humidifier near the pink bromeliad houseplant or place it over a saucer filled with rocks and water. Ensure the base of the pot remains above the water level in the saucer at all times. Alternatively, mist the plant two to three times a day to increase humidity. The leaves of the pink bromeliad turn brown due to dry air.
Water the pink bromeliad when the soil feels dry to the touch, preferably once a week until excess water runs out of the drainage holes at the base of the pot. Avoid overwatering the plant; it will increase the chances of rot.
Feed the pink bromeliad a liquid houseplant fertiliser at one-third to one-half the recommended strength every two months. Flush the potted bromeliad with water once a month to remove accumulated fertiliser salts.
Prune the spent flower stalk of the pink bromeliad plant to maintain appearance. Use a sharp, sterilised pruning knife to cut the spent part of the stalk and discard it. Remove the side shoots called pups from the plant when they are about one-third the size of the parent plant. Sever each pup close to the parent plant after it finishes flowering in late spring and pot shallowly in a container of fresh potting mix. The pups take four to six months to root.
Spray pests such as spider mites, mealy bugs and scale insects with homemade solution composed of 2 to 3 tbsp of dishwashing detergent mixed in 1 gallon of water.
Tips and warnings
- Fill the container with equal amounts perlite, pine bark, coarse sand and porous volcanic rock for growing the pink bromeliad.
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- University of Florida IFAS Extension; Bromeliads; Robert J. Black, et al.; 2009
- Guide to Houseplants: Pink Quill
- Clemson Cooperative Extension; Bromeliads; Karen Russ, et al.
- Smithsonian Institute; Bromeliad Fact Sheet; Katie Elzer; 2000
- Nurseries Online; Growing Bromeliads; Steve Ward; 2005
- Bromeliad Plant: Bromeliad Care Instructions