Cutting off flower??

flowergirl70ksMarch 18, 2011

I received a plant with a yellow flower last Sept. The flower is now dying. Do I just cut it off? Can this plant go out on the deck this summer? Will it ever flower again? What kind of soil and fertilizer does it need?

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Hi Flowergirl

You said "I received a plant with a yellow flower last Sept"

Firstly, was it a bromeliad and if so what sort? If we know what sort it was, it's much easier to give the correct advice that's why a picture is always helpful.

I know here in Australia the most popular bromeliads to give as gifts are usually Guzmanias or Vrieseas.

In the following two pic's, the first one is a Guzmania and the second is a Vriesea. Did your plant look like either of these?

All the best, Nev.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2011 at 2:21AM
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I'm finally getting back to this. It looks like the first one, no tag to tell me what it was. I would appreciate any information you have.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2011 at 9:18PM
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Hi flowergirl,

I notice when reading your profile that we have a lot in common. I started gardening at a early age with my Dad also, starting with vegetables and graduating to flowers, orchids, ferns, and now the best of all, bromeliads.

Now to answer your questions; Yes, now that the flower is dying you can cut it off. That plant won't flower again but will gradually die. As it very slowly deteriorates, it will produce new plants from around the base. These are called offsets or more commonly, "pups". When they are about half the size of the mother plant, they may be removed and started off in a pot of their own and after a couple of years will flower also. Alternately, the plant can be left in the pot, placed in a semi shaded location in the garden beneath a tree and the pups allowed to do their own thing and make up into multiple plants which will flower once mature.

Guzmanias generally require less light than other bromeliads and here I grown mine beneath 75% green shade cloth. I have also found in my location here in Australia, that some Guzmanias can be a little cold sensitive, so if you get low temperaures where you live, the plant needs to be given extra protection during this period.

The potting mix needs to be a good free draining mix capable of retaining a little moisture. I have found that any good quality cymbidium orchid mix is suitable with a little peat moss added for extra moisture retention.

As for fertilizer, Guzmanias do like more fertilizer than most other bromeliads, however not one that is too high in Nitrogen as this will give extra growth at the expense of flowers. Not knowing what fertilizers are available in your country I would advise you to speak to other bromeliad growers in your area or contact the horticultural expert in your local Garden Centre for advice on this subject.

I hope this helps

All the best, Nev.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2011 at 3:56PM
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Thanks so much for your answer. The one sent on my e-mail I can't bring up so I'm glad for the one here. I believe I can care for it now the right way. I do grow a few orchids also. I have a lovely sun porch to winter things over.
Spring has come to Southwest KS. I have daffodils, violas, primroses and hyacinths blooming now.The trees are beginning to leaf out so hopefully our bitter cold weather is over. However we have been known to have a killing frost the first week in May.
Happy gardening to you all. Marilynne

    Bookmark   March 22, 2011 at 9:58AM
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Hi flowergirl,

I'll try sending the email again as sometimes this has happened to me in the past when I've sent emails via GW.

All the best, Nev

    Bookmark   March 23, 2011 at 1:52AM
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