How to grow and care for Queen's Tears Plant (Billbergia Bromeliads) Indoors

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Queen's Tears Bromeliads, Billbergia Bromeliads

Photo Credit: Plants Rescue

Botanical name: Billbergia spp
Family: Bromeliaceae
Sufamily: Bromelioideae
Common names: Queen's Tears Plant, Friendship Plant

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Description

Queen's Tears Plant also called Friendship Plant is one of the easiest Bromeliads to grow indoors and is grown for the beauty of their drooping showy flower-heads and leathery, arching long grass-like leaves.

The flower-head bracts in Queen's Tears Bromeliads are about 3 in. long and the leaves are 1 ft long and reddish under good light.

The common name, 'Queen's Tears', is due to the drops of nectar that the plant produces when it is touched or is moved. While the common name, 'Friendship Plant', is because it is easy to share with friends from the pups (offsets) that form at the base of the plant.

The usual pattern for Queen's Tears Bromeliad is a rosette of leathery, strap-like foliage and flower-head which arises on a stalk from the cup-like center of rosette.

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Flower

The Queen's Tears Bromeliad matures at the age of 2-3 years and flowers quite easily and the display may last several months.

Once the flower-head fades, the rosette of leaves in Queen's Tears Bromeliad begins to die and is replaced by offsets (pups) at the base.

The display of the flower-head in Queen's Tears Bromeliad is due to the presence of long-lasting showy bracts; true flowers are small and short-lived.

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Origin

Queen's Tears Bromeliads (Billbergia Bromeliads) are native to Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Argentina.

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Varieties

The most popular of the Billbergia Bromeliads for growing indoors is the Billbergia nutans.

Another of the Billbergia Bromeliads that is common is Billbergia windii which is larger, with the flower-stalks being about 18 in. long and the foliage is grey-green.

Buy beautiful and healthy Queen's Tears Bromeliads from Etsy.

Queen's Tears Plant, Billbergia Bromeliads

Photo Credit: Pinterest

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Care Indoors

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Light Requirements

Queen's Tears Bromeliads grow best in bright light but away from direct sunlight. Direct sunlight will cause the leaves to lose their dark-green color and will appear washed out with pale brown leaf patches. Queen's Tears Plant can also grow under a grow light.

Regularly turn the pot to ensure that the plant receives light on all sides for uniform growth. Check out this guide on understanding light for houseplants.

How to Water Queen's Tears Bromeliads

Like with other rosette Bromeliads, Queen's Tears Bromeliads require the central 'vase' to be filled with water at all times. Empty and refill the Queen's Tears Bromeliad 'vase' regularly to prevent growth of bacteria which may cause the water to become smelly.

Use only chlorine-free water to water these plants as they are sensitive to chlorine and other chemicals that may be dissolved in water.

Water the soil of your Queen's Tears plant only when it dries to keep the roots moist. Avoid soggy soil as it can lead to root-rot and eventual death of your Bromeliad.


Temperature for Queen's Tears Bromeliads

The best temperature for growing your Queen's Tears Bromeliad indoors is an average warmth with a minimum of 150C.

However, to bring this bromeliad to flower requires temperatures above 260C. You can achieve this temperature by taking this plant outside during the hot period but put it under a light shade.

Humidity for Queen's Tears Bromeliads

Queen's Tears Plant requires a humid enviroment inorder to thrive. If the humidity is too low, the plant will respond with brown leaf tips.

To raise humidity, set the pot on a wet pebble tray or use a cool mist humidifier. Check out these techniques on how to raise humidity for houseplants.

Ensure there is good air circulation for your Queen's Tears Bromeliads to prevent pests and disease infestation.

Fertilizer (Feeding) for Queen's Tears Bromeliads

Feed Queen's Tears Plant with a liquid fertilizer (foliar feed) every 2 weeks during the growing season.

Do not feed your Queen's Tears Bromeliad during the cold season as growth is minimal at this time and it may lead to fertilizer burn for your Bromeliad.

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Repotting

Repotting Queen's Tears Bromeliad is not necessary as its roots are tiny and are unlikely to fill the pot. Pot it in a wide, shallow, heavy pot to prevent it from toppling over as it can become top-heavy.

Also provide support for Queen's Tears Plant to help keep it upright and prevent it from toppling over. Read more on how to train houseplants.

Soil for Queen's Tears Bromeliads

The best soil for Queen's Tears Plant should be rich in organic matter, loose, free-draining bark soil to prevent it from getting soggy while providing the required nutrients.

Most orchid potting mixes are ideal for Queen's Tears Plant. Buy quality Orchid Potting Mix for your Queen's Tears Plant from Etsy.

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Pruning

Pruning Queen's Tears Bromeliad involves removal of dead leaves to keep your plant neat and tidy. This also allows adequate room for the new plants (pups) to grow.

Remove the dead foliage by cutting at the base with a sharp, clean knife or a pair of scissors to minimize injury and disease infestations.

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Propagation

Queen's Tears Plant are propagated from offsets (pups) appearing at the base of the plant.

How to propagate Queen's Tears Bromeliads from offsets (pups)

When the Queen's Tears Plant offset is several months old or 1/3 to 1/2 the height of mother plant, separate it from the mother by cutting with a sharp, clean knife or scissors.

Ensure the offset (pup) has some roots attached to it as they are necessary to provide support for the pup.

Plant the offset shallowly in loose, free-draining, bark soil. Use a shallow heavy pot to prevent the plant from toppling over as it can get top-heavy.

Also, ensure the Queen's Tears Bromeliad is well supported to prevent it from toppling over as the root system is small.

Place the set up in a warm, shaded place until the new Queen's Tears Bromeliad plant is well established after which routine care can begin.

Queen's Tears Bromeliads, Billbergia Bromeliads

Photo Credit: Stringfixer

Queen's Tears Bromeliads Problems Indoors

Queen's Tears Bromeliads problems indoors are mainly brought about by humidity, lighting and watering issues. Read on for the remedies and solutions.

Queen's Tears Bromeliad brown leaf tips

Queen's Tears Bromeliad brown leaf tips are caused by too dry air (low humidity) This plant requires a humid environment to thrive.

To raise humidity for your Queen's Tears Bromeliad, set the pot on a wet pebble tray or use a cool mist humidifier. Check out these techniques on how to raise humidity for houseplants.

Queen's Tears Bromeliad pale brown leaf patches

Pale brown leaf patches in Queen's Tears plant are due to exposure of the plant to hot, direct sunlight.

Queen's Tears Bromeliad does not like to be exposed to direct sunlight. Protect it from direct sunlight or move it to a shadier spot where it will receive bright light away from direct sunlight.

Queen's Tears Bromeliad dark, soft, drooping, long leaves

Queen's Tears Bromeliad dark, soft, drooping, long leaves are caused by inadequate light (too little light).

Move the plant to a brighter spot and ensure it is receiving bright light but away from direct sunlight. Queen's Tears Plant can also grow under a grow light. Also, regularly turn the pot to ensure that the plant receives light on all sides for uniform growth.

Queen's Tears Bromeliad pests

The common pests in Queen's Tears plant are scales and mealy bugs. Isolate the affected plant to prevent spread to other houseplants and treat it appropriately for the pests.

Queen's Tears Bromeliad dying

If your Queen's Tears Bromeliad has not flowered, the cause of death is root-rot disease due to soggy soil.

Take out the plant from its pot and inspect the roots. Mushy bron-black roots indicate root-rot. Read on how to treat root-rot disease.

If your Queen's Tears Bromeliad has flowered then rotting and death of the rosette which bore the flower-stalk is natural to give room for the new plants (pups).

Remove the dead foliage from your Queen's Tears Bromeliad by cutting at the base with a clean knife or a pair of scissors to create space for the new plants.

Is Queen's Tears Bromeliad (Billbergia Bromeliad) toxic?

Queen's Tears Bromeliads (Billbergia Bromeliads) are non-toxic to humans and pets. The plants are safe to grow indoors.

However, the leaves of your Queen's Tears Bromeliad bear short spines which may cause physical injury if handled with bare hands. Always wear gloves when handling your Queen's Tears Bromeliad to prevent injury.

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