How to Maintain Bromeliad Plants


Bromeliads are tropical to subtropical plants and will not tolerate a freeze. These types of plants make excellent house plants and container plants. Bromeliads come in a variety of sizes shapes and colors. Two of the best known bromeliads are the pineapple and Spanish moss, which shows how diverse this family of plants can be. Some bromeliads attach themselves to trees and obtain moisture and nutrients from the air and rain that gets trapped in their leaves or cups. Others grow well in soil and need very little care.

Step 1

Keep the plants in bright indirect sun. If the leaves turn pale-green or yellow, the light levels are too high. If the leaves become darker-green or become elongated, light levels are too high. If these conditions happen, adjust the location of the plant if indoors. Outdoors, move the plant or plant another plant to give it partial shade.

Step 2

Maintain temperatures above 60 degrees Fahrenheit around the bromeliads. The plants will do fine at high temperatures as long as there is proper humidity.

Step 3

Water the bromeliads when the soil feels dry to touch. If the plant has leaves that form a cup, water may be placed into the cup, provided the plant is getting enough light. In low-light situations, water only the soil. For epiphytic plants, spray with a misting bottle or submerge in water once a week.

Step 4

Place indoor plants on a tray filled with pebbles and water. The bottom of the container should not touch the water but sit on top of the pebbles. This will provide humidity to the plant and is essential during time when heat or air conditioners are removing moisture from the air.

Step 5

Open a window or keep a fan on low on the plant for a few hours each day to circulate the air. This will supply the plant with carbon dioxide and keep spider mites and aphids from attacking indoor plants.

Step 6

Apply a controlled-release fertilizer to the surface of the soil around the plant, in the spring. Keep the fertilizer from touching the main trunk of the plant. Water the fertilizer to dissolve and leach it into the soil. Follow the manufacturer's directions as to how much to apply. Do not fertilize during the winter or in very low-light conditions.

Things You'll Need

  • Spray Bottle
  • Distilled Water
  • Tray
  • Pebbles
  • Small fan
  • Controlled-release fertilizer


  • University of Florida Extension: Bromeliads
  • Clemson University Extension: Bromeliads
  • University of Florida Extension: Bromeliads at a Glance
Keywords: caring for Bromeliads, bromeliad plant care, bromeliad plant maintenance

About this Author

Dale DeVries is a retired realtor with 30 years of experience in almost every facet of the business. DeVries started writing in 1990 when she wrote advertising and training manuals for her real estate agents. Since retiring, she has spent the last two years writing well over a thousand articles online for Associated Content, Bright Hub and Demand Studios.