Bromeliads Grow Many Different Materials
Bromeliads can be grown very well in many different materials. River gravel, perlite, coarse granite, treefern fiber, fir bark, coconut fiber, cork bark, German peat, sand, coarse leafmold or mixtures. In fact, mixtures are preferable.
The following requirements are all necessary for success, so your mixture should have:
- Enough substance to hold the plant erect
- Good aeration
- Good drainage
- Some moisture holding capacity (never a great amount and never soggy)
- Ability to hold some fertility (does not leach rapidly)
A sample mixture could be as follows:
- 2 parts treefern fiber
- 1 part coarse granite or perlite
- 1 part Peat Moss
- Pot size can be quite small, but large enough to hold the plant upright!
A curved piece of broken pot inverted over the drainage hole (in clay pots) and covered to a depth of one third of the pot with broken crock or gravel, is good insurance that the drainage will never become clogged.
The leaf bases should not be set any deeper than the surface of the medium.
If the plant has little or no roots and will not stand up satisfactorily in the pot, it should be temporarily staked or tied.
NEVER USE GALVANIZED OR COPPER WIRE!
Bamboo or wooden splints are fine and they may be removed as soon as the plant is well rooted.
Never add strong fertilizer to the potting mixture. It will only rot the potting medium; it can also cause the roots and the base of the plant to rot.