Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Bromeliads in my garden;

family of monocot flowering plants of around 2,400 species native mainly to the tropical Americas, with a few species found in the American subtropics and one in tropical west Africa.[1] The family includes both epiphytes, such as Spanish moss (Tillandsia usneoides), and terrestrial species, such as the pineapple (Ananas comosus). Many bromeliads are able to store water in a "tank" formed by their tightly-overlapping leaf bases. However, the family is diverse enough to include the tank bromeliads, grey-leaved epiphytic Tillandsia species that gather water only from leaf structures called trichomes, and a large number of desert-dwelling succulents.
The largest bromeliad is
Puya raimondii, which reaches 3–4 m tall in vegetative growth with a flower spike 9–10 m tall, and the smallest is probably Spanish moss.

Bromeliads are easy and colourful plants to grow in the warm climate garden. They do best if they have some shelter from the midday sun. They need light and some sun to bring out the colours in their leaves. They produce pups, their offspring, which one can cut off and plant again. Once the plant has flowered it will die, but not before it has produced one or several pups. I grow many different types,

Neoregelia, Nidularium, Vriesia, Aechmea, Tillandsia, Guzmania and more.




History
Bromeliads
are one of the more recent plant groups to have emerged, presumed to have evolved at the close of the
Cretaceous, over 65 million years ago. Fossilized bromeliads have been dated back to roughly 30 million years ago. The greatest number of primitive species reside in the Andean highlands of South America suggesting a beginning there. The west African species Pitcairnia feliciana is the only bromeliad not endemic to the Americas, and is thought to have reached Africa via long-distance dispersal approximately 12 million years ago[2].




Humans have been using bromeliads for thousands of years. The Incas, Aztecs, Maya and others used them for food, protection, fiber and ceremony, just as they are still used today. European interest began when Spanish conquistadors returned with pineapple, which became so popular as an exotic food that the image of the pineapple was adapted into European art and sculpture. In 1776, the species Guzmania lingulata was introduced to Europe, causing a sensation among gardeners unfamiliar to such a plant. In 1828, Aechmea fasciata was brought to Europe, followed by Vriesea splendens in 1840. These transplants were successful enough that they are still among the most widely grown bromeliad varieties.












Photos TS.
Source Wikipedia.








14 comments:

Tatyana said...

Thanks for such interesting, informative post! I learned a lot of new things about this plant, and pictures are beautiful!

Janie said...

What an interesting history and lovely photos. I knew pineapple was a bromeliad, but I never heard that Spanish moss is. Fascinating.

D'Rimba said...

wow everything was perfect, i really need it....

Darla said...

They are cool plants. I have two, Queen's Tears and an upright yellow blooming one!

Helga said...

ich kann gar nicht glauben das bei euch unsere Topfblumem so wunderschön wachsen.Ihr habt halt das bessere Wetter.lach
L.G.
Helga

HappyMouffetard said...

What amazing colours they are.

Patrick Gracewood said...

Thanks for this article.
I've been growing a bromeliad called Queen's Tears for years. It survives indoors on neglect and a little water and doesn't mind in the least being pot bound. It blooms these amazing arching confections of bright pink,lavender, chartreuse and yellow in the dead of winter. Just when I need blooms the most. Great plant
wish I knew the species name.

sweet bay said...

A great post about a beautiful group of plants!

Prospero said...

Nice post on Bromeliads (I love Bromeliads!)

MedaM said...

This is really interesting and informative post on this colourful plants which I didn’t know earlier. Those species that you have in your garden are beautiful and look very decorative.

diane said...

BB likes Bromeliads very much, so i grew a few varieties outside his office downstairs. But my oh my I have never seen such a collection as you have. They are absolutely beautiful.

Barbara said...

Einige Jahre hatte ich auch verschiedene Bromelien als Zimmerpflanzen, nun ist diese "Phase" aber vorbei. Beeindruckend die Vielfalt, die in deinem Garten wächst. Schön, dass du immer wieder Pflanzenporträts "postest" und mein kleines botanisches Wissen "aufbesserst". (Es macht auch neugierig auf weiteres Nachlesen bei gewissen Pflanzen!). Viele liebe Sonntagsgrüsse,
Barbara

Titania said...

Thank you very much for all your generous and interesting comments.

LadyLuz said...

Gorgeous - wish I could get my pups to flower. One with zebra-type leaves is just beautiful for its own sake, though.