I Love Billbergia nutans aka The Queen’s Tears

Dec 20, 2019 | Love This!

Name: Queen’s tears bromeliad, aka Bilbergia nutans, or friendship plant.

Type of Plant: An epiphytic bromeliad native to South America. The shallow roots are used for anchoring the plant onto trees, so they don’t really need soil. Orchid bark is fine. 

Why I Love/Hate this plant: I love that this Bilbergia is called “friendship plant” because I got it from a friend. It’s an easy plant to grow and the foliage is nice enough, but when it comes into flower the complexity of those stylish blooms will knock you over.

A Word to the Wise:  This bromeliad is triggered into flowering by short days. Put it out in dappled sun over the summer, and give it some time-release fertilizer at that time. Water every few days outside and indoors. When you bring the plant inside in the fall, put it in a sunny window but in a room that’s just a bit cooler and you’ll be rewarded by the plant flowering in late-December or January.

My Billbergia nutans came into flower this week. It seems to love the south-facing window where it is placed this year. Look at those navy blue strips on the outside of the green petals! This plant needs no color-enhancement in a photo program…the colors you see are just what the plant produces.


1 Comment

  1. Cary Bradley

    Yes, this billbergia is a stunner when in bloom and it is in bloom a lot! Grew in our backyard in Southern California when I was a girl and adored it’s colors and ease of care. Thanks for the reminder of its beauty. Ordering from Logee’s today! Yippee!


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