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AECHMEA 'Patricia'

Image of Aechmea 'Patricia'

James Burghardt

Family

Bromeliaceae

Botanical Name

AECHMEA 'Patricia'

Plant Common Name

Aechmea, Patricia Aechmea, Patricia Bromeliad

General Description

A large bromeliad for the tropical landscape, 'Patricia' has handsome evergreen foliage and brilliantly hued flowers. Developed by Bullis Bromeliads of Homestead, Florida, this frost-tender perennial forms an bold upright rosette of arching, broadly strap-shaped leaves. The leathery, light olive-green leaves have hints of silver and blushes of dark red-copper, particularly in cool conditions. Their edges are lined in tiny red lacerating spines. The leaf bases form a water-collecting "cup" at the rosette's center. In the heat of summer, mature plants send up a sturdy, red-stemmed flower stalk whose wide-spreading branches are crowded with showy orange and yellow flower bracts. The flower stalk remains for several months. The rosette dies back after flowering, to be replaced by one to three young pup plants that grow at its base.

Grow 'Patricia' in filtered or dappled sun and a moist, well-drained, humus-rich growing medium (not heavy soil). Keep the central cup filled with water and mist the leaves regularly, especially in the heat and strong sunlight of summer. This large bromeliad makes an interesting greenhouse or tropical landscape plant, situated where its spines will cause no harm. It grows well attached to a tree or wedged between rocks. The sheer size of this plant makes an impressive clump, so do not use it as a houseplant!Keep copper wire or containers (and any sprays with copper in them) away from bromeliads, as copper is toxic to them.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 9

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    10 - 15

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Tender Perennial

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    34"-40" / 86.4cm - 101.6cm

  • Width

    30"-36" / 76.2cm - 91.4cm

  • Bloom Time

    Early Summer, Summer

  • Native To

    Hybrid Origin

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Rosette/Stemless

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Red, Orange, Coral

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Light Green, Olive, Bronze

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Light Green, Olive, Bronze

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Light Green, Olive, Bronze

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Light Green, Olive, Bronze, Orange Red

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Bold

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Cutflower, Feature Plant, Foundation, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    Yes

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Hummingbirds

  • Self-Sowing

    No