The wide range of varieties belonging to this species does not allow to give a precise definition of the salient characteristics of these specimens, but it is possible to say that most of these plants have leaves arranged in a rosette. All have large leaves and some varieties have thorns on the edges of the foliage, while others are succulent.
Many varieties have hair on the leaf pages, which helps them to retain water when temperatures are high and to counteract the effects of possible dehydration.
All plants of this type have a particular characteristic that distinguishes them that can be more or less evident, it is a central fulcrum in the shape of a cup that is waterproof and allows the plants to collect rainwater and store it for periods of drought. Inside it, then, stop also small animals and insects that can become a source of nourishment for the growth and development of the plant.
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Being a genus that includes many varieties, there are plants that require very different cultivation methods. Plants grown in flats are usually quite hardy hybrids.
The bromeliads are easy to cultivate, they need a luminous place, but not illuminated by the direct rays of the sun for too many hours a day; they water regularly, but without exceeding, and allowing the soil to dry up well between one watering and the other: usually we fill the calyx formed by the leaves. For a better flowering, we furnish some fertilizer for green plants once a month, in quantity equal to one third of the recommended one.
They fear the cold, so in Italy they are grown as apartment plants.
It is also good to vaporize the leaves with demineralized water to maintain the right degree of moisture.
Bromeliads: Pests and diseases
These plants can be affected by different diseases; if in the presence of water stagnations, they can show very harmful radical rottenness. They can also be affected by red spiders and cochineal. To eliminate cochineals, if the attack is not massive, you can intervene quickly by manually eliminating the problem, with the help of a cloth with alcohol, or, washing the plant with water and neutral soap, to be rinsed with great care.
For red spiders it can be a good method to intensify the vaporization of water on the leaves.