How to Grow and Care for Scarlet Star Bromeliads (Guzmania Bromeliads) Indoors


Scarlet Star Bromeliad, Guzmania Bromeliad

Botanical name: Guzmania spp
Family: Bromeliaceae
Sufamily: Tillandsioideae

Description

Scarlet Star Bromeliads (Guzmania Bromeliads) are grown for the beauty of their bright-red or orange showy flower-heads with a central cluster of small white flowers.

Guzmania Bromeliads are typical Bromeliads with leathery, arching leaves and a distinct central 'vase' from which a stout stalk bearing a bold flower-head emerges. The leaves are backward-arching and smooth-edged, about 1.5 ft long.

Flower

A Scarlet Star Bromeliad may take upto 4 years to reach the flowering stage but the display may last several months.

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

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

Origin

Guzmania Bromeliads (Scarlet Star Bromeliads) are native to Florida, The West Indies, southern America, Central America, Mexico and western and northern South America.

Varieties

Several varieties of the Scarlet Star Bromeliads are available. Guzmania lingulata which bears orange and red bracts and its leaves are 1.5 ft long.

Guzmania zahnii is the giant bearing 2 ft long leaves. Guzmania Omer Morobe and Guzmania musaica are grown for their striped or banded foliage.

Where to Buy

If you are looking to add these beauties to your collection, various Scarlet Star Bromeliads are available online at Etsy. Buy beautiful and healthy Scarlet Star Bromeliads (Guzmania Bromeliads) from Etsy.

Scarlet Star Bromeliad, Guzmania Bromeliad

Scarlet Star Bromeliad Care Indoors

Scarlet Star Bromeliads (Guzmania Bromeliads) thrive in bright light but away from direct sunlight, warm and humid conditions and consistently moist, fertile, well-drained soil coupled with regular feeding during the growing season.

Guzmania Bromeliads require regular pruning to keep them neat as well as provide space for the growth of pups. Repotting is not necessary as they are slow growers and once they flower, they die and leave behind pups. Keep reading for more on these growing conditions and how to achieve them.

Light Requirements

Scarlet Star Bromeliad grows best in bright light but away from direct sunlight. It can also grow under a grow light where the natural lighting is not adequate.

Turn the pot regularly to ensure that the Guzmania Bromeliad receives light on all sides for even growth. Check out this guide on understanding light for houseplants.

Watering

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

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

Water the soil only when it dries to keep the roots moist. Avoid soggy soil as it can lead to root-rot disease and eventual death of the Bromeliad.


Temperature

The best temperature for growing Guzmania Bromeliad indoors is an average warmth with a minimum of 150C. However, to bring the bromeliad to flower requires temperatures above 260C.

Humidity

Scarlet Star Bromeliad requires a humid enviroment 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 that there is good air circulation for Guzmania Bromeliads to discourage pests and disease infestation.

Fertilizer (Feeding)

Feed Scarlet Star Bromeliads with a liquid fertilizer (foliar feed) every 2 weeks during the growing season. Do not feed during the cold season as growth is minimal at this time and it may lead to fertilizer burn and eventual death of your Bromeliad.

Repotting

Repotting Scarlet Star Bromeliad is not necessary as its roots are tiny and are unlikely to fill the pot. Pot it in a shallow, heavy pot to prevent it from toppling over as it can become top-heavy. Also provide support to help keep it upright. Read more on how to train houseplants.

Soil

The best soil for Scarlet Star Bromeliad 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. Buy quality Orchid Potting Mix for Guzmania Bromeliad from Etsy.

Pruning

Pruning Scarlet Star Bromeliad involves removal of dead leaves to keep your plant neat and tidy and to allow adequate room for the new plants to grow. Remove the dead foliage by cutting at the base with a sharp, clean knife or a pair of scissors.

Propagation

Scarlet Star Bromeliads (Guzmania Bromeliads) are propagated from offsets (pups) appearing at the base of the plant.

How to propagate Scarlet Star Bromeliads from offsets (pups)

When the Scarlet Star Bromeliad offset (pup) 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 has some roots attached to it and plant it shallowly in loose, free-draining bark soil.

Use a shallow heavy pot to prevent it from toppling over as it can get top-heavy and ensure that the plant is well supported to prevent it from toppling over as its has a small root system.

Place the set up in a warm, shaded place until the new Guzmania Bromeliad is well established after which routine care can begin.

Scarlet Star Bromeliad, Guzmania Bromeliad

Guzmania Bromeliad Problems Indoors

Scarlet Star Bromeliad (Guzmania Bromeliad) problems indoors are due to cultural faults in humidity, lighting and watering. They include drooping leaves, leaf patches, plant death, brown leaf tips, pests and diseases among others. Read on for more on these problems, their remedies and solutions.

Dark, soft, drooping, long leaves

Inadequate light for Scarlet Star Bromeliads is the cause of dark, soft, drooping, long leaves. This Bromeliad grows best in bright light.

Move the Guzmania Bromeliad to a brighter spot as it prefers bright light but away from direct sunlight or instal a grow light if the natural lighting is not adequate.

Brown leaf tips

Growing Scarlet Star Bromeliad where the air is too dry (low humidity) will cause it to have 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.

Plant dying

If the Scarlet Star Bromeliad has not flowered, the cause of death is root-rot disease due to soggy soil.

If it has flowered then rotting and death of rosette which bore the flower-stalk is natural to give room for the new plants.

Remove the dead foliage by cutting at the base with a clean knife or a pair of scissors to create space for the new plants.

Pale brown leaf patches

Exposing Scarlet Star Bromeliad to direct sunlight will cause it to have pale brown patches on the leaves. Guzmania Bromeliad does not like to be exposed to direct sunlight. Protect it from direct sunlight or move it to a shadier spot.

Pests

Scarlet Star Bromeliads pests; Scales and Mealy Bugs. Isolate the affected plant to prevent spread to other houseplants and treat it appropriately for the pests.

Is Scarlet Star Bromeliad toxic?

Scarlet Star Bromeliads (Guzmania Bromeliads) are non-toxic to humans and pets. The plants are safe to grow indoors.

However, the leaves bear short spines which may cause physical injury if handled with bare hands. Always wear gloves when handling Guzmania Bromeliad to prevent injury.

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