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PresidentW. R. Paylen, Calif.
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1972-1975: Jeanne Woodbury, Ralph Barton, George Anderson, Virginia Berezin, Victoria Padilla, Charles Wiley, Ervin Wurthmann, Jean Merkel.

1973-1976: Robert G. Burstrom, Leonard Kent, Eric Knobloch, Elmer Lorenz, Patrick Mitchell, Edward McWilliams, Harold W. Wiedman, Kelsey Williams.

1974-1977: Eloise Beach, Kathy Dorr, George Kalmbacher, Fritz Kubisch, W. R. Paylen, Amy Jean Gilmartin, Robert Read, Edgar Smith.


Adda Abendroth, Brazil; Luis Ariza Julia, Dominican Republic; David Barry, Jr., USA; Olwen Ferris, Australia; Mulford B. Foster, USA; Marcel Lecoufle, France; Harold Martin, New Zealand; Richard Oeser, Germany; Dr. W. Rauh, Germany; Raulino Reitz, Brazil; Walter Richter, Germany; L. B. Smith, USA; R. G. Wilson, Costa Rica; J. Marnier-Lapostolle, France.


Published six times a year: January, March, May, July, September, November. Free to members.

Editor: Victoria Padilla
Asst. Editor: Kathy Dorr

CONTENTS — March-April, 1975

Puya in Costa Rica
  Robert W. Read & Gilbert Daniels43
Identification of Bromels
  Amy Jean Gilmartin48
Using Bromeliads in Flower Arrangements
  May Moir58
Guzmania dissitiflora
  Roger K. Taylor59
Tillandsia Edithae
  Werner Rauh60
Aechmea Chantinii — A Love Story
  Victoria Padilla63
Seeds, Seedlings and Offshoots
  Walter E. Goddard66
A Yankee Bromeliad Tree
  Dee Bundy68
In Happy Memory of Edgar W. Ensign
  Julian Nally70
The California Scene72
Financial Statement73
Nidularium billbergioides80


Tillandsia edithae — Photo by Werner Rauh

Articles and photographs are earnestly solicited. Length is no factor. Please mail copy and all questions to the editor, 647 South Saltair Ave., Los Angeles, California 90049.

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Figure 1. Puya dasylirioides under scrutiny by Bob Read on a rare sunny day at about 3,000 meters elevation. This interesting bromeliad shares a sphagnum bog with a cycad-like Blechnum fern high on the crest of the Cerro la Muerte, Costa Rica.

In March of 1974, the authors conducted a general collecting trip in Costa Rica. On 10 March, their route took them over the Cerro de la Muerte on the Pan American Highway near the crest of which, at approximately 3,000 meters elevation, there are a number of sphagnum bogs which are well known to botanists for their particularly interesting flora. The two dominant plants of these bogs are a cycad-like species of fern [Blechnum] and the terrestrial bromeliad Puya dasylirioides. While the majority of the Puya plants on this occasion were bearing old inflorescences heavily laden with seed, it should be noted that a few young inflorescences were also in evidence (figure 1). No plants, however, were in flower. The flowers have been seen previously during visits in the months of July and August.

Seed was collected and a quantity was contributed to the Bromeliad Society Seed Fund. Seed sown by Daniels germinated readily. Sowings on both living sphagnum and milled sphagnum germinated with equal success and plants grown on in both milled sphagnum and a terrestrial bromeliad mix are doing equally well. Attempts in the past to establish this species in cultivation from collected plants have generally failed but the prognosis for successful growth from seed is excellent. The species is quite ornamental, relatively small and compact, and certainly worthy of the challenge to bromeliad connoisseurs.

A revision of the genus Puya was published in October 1964 by Dr. Lyman B. Smith (Phytologia 10 (6):454-481) based, as he said on "the use and subsequent polishing of the rough key mentioned in" his "Notes on Bromeliaceae XVI" (Phytologia 7 (8):426.1961). At that time he noted there were 138 recognizable species of Puya. After ten years it seems timely for a quick review of the genus Puya and its treatment by Dr. Smith.

The genus as treated in 1964 comprised two subgenera. These were distinguished by the inflorescence branches being sterile (flowers aborted) toward the apex in subgenus PUYA, or the inflorescence and branches being fertile (having functional seed-producing flowers) throughout, in subgenus PITCAIRNIOPSIS. Another subgenus "Chagualia" was included in the synonymy of PITCAIRNIOPSIS, because the "character" of appendaged petals, works well in Chile but breaks down in Bolivia and northern Argentina."

In 1970, the name PITCAIRNIOPSIS was replaced by PUYOPSIS. This name had been published earlier for a subgenus of the genus Pitcairnia where it comprised a group of species now mostly included in Puya. These species share characteristics of Puya subgenus PITCAIRNIOPSIS. Rather than being treated as puya-like pitcairnias, these and other species already treated in Puya are now best considered as pitcairnia-like puyas. When transferred to the genus Puya, the name PUYOPSIS has priority over PITCAIRNIOPSIS and it became necessary to take up the earlier name and reduce the other names, also including Mez's subgenus POURRETIA, to synonymy.

The genus Puya, according to Dr. Smith's recently completed monograph3, presently contains 168 species, with 161 of these attributed to the subgenus PUYOPSIS, and the remaining 7 to subgenus PUYA. Only two species are found naturally in Costa Rica. One of them, P. dasylirioides, is endemic to Costa Rica, Colombia and Venezuela, to the Guyana highlands.

Figure 2. Specimens of Puya dasylirioides being prepared for the press, and drying. The old inflorescence on the left contained mature viable seed. Note the corrugations and narrow dark band of the leaf sheath. Marginal teeth are barely visible.

Puya dasylirioides, of the subgenus PUYOPSIS, was first collected in December 1925 by Paul C. Standley and described by him in the Journal of the Washington Academy of Sciences (Vol. 17, pp. 159-160) in 1927 as follows:

Puya dasylirioides is the most conspicuous plant of the Laguna de la Chonta, which is a sphagnum bog of several acres, occupying probably an old crater, and inclosed (sic) on all sides by dense wet forest. The plants grow in great numbers everywhere except in the deep water, their tall stiff stems (all in fruit in December) suggesting mullein stalks. This lake is one of the most remarkable localities from a botanical standpoint that I have ever seen. It yielded a substantial number of curious plants that I have not found elsewhere in Costa Rica.

The genus Puya, represented in the high mountains of South America by over 40 species, has not been reported from North America. The Costa Rican plant, according to Mez's monograph, is related to the imperfectly known P. Goudotiana Mez, of Bogota. The leaves, with their hard broad bases and narrow spine-margined blades, strongly suggest those of some species of Dasylirion. They show upon their faces the impressions of the spiny margins of the adjacent leaves, produced by mutual pressure in the dense rosette which they form, a feature characteristic of the genus Dasylirion.

From Standley's account and from the original description of the species one could get the impression that P. dasylirioides presents a well-armed and vicious appearance. Standley described the leaves as "in a large dense basal cluster, stiff, 30-60 cm. long and larger, at base (above the sheaths) about 5 cm. wide, evenly tapering to the long-attenuate subulate apex, thick, finely striate, yellow-green, glabrous on the upper surface, beneath finely and closely whitish-lepidote; leaf margins armed with sharp-pointed ascending blackish broad-based spinose teeth 4-5 mm. long and 1-4 cm. apart, the tip of the blade often unarmed; leaf-sheaths somewhat inflated but hard, dark brown, 7-8 cm. wide, the upper part of the sheath armed with minute close-set teeth; leaves of the stem similar to the basal ones but shorter, decreasing in size upward, the uppermost unarmed or nearly so and with thin brown papery sheaths;..."

Plants collected in Costa Rica by the authors on this occasion could hardly be considered more dangerous than the least so of our commonly cultivated aechmeas. In fact, we were usually unaware of the marginal teeth. The relatively unarmed leaves of this species, unlike those of the other Costa Rican species, are certainly atypical considering the vicious nature of so many of the better known puyas of South America. It was the practically unarmed habit of this species which made us think it worthy of introduction into cultivation, even though its seedlings may be quite variable. The type specimen, for example, deposited in the United States National Herbarium exhibits strong, but short, and apparently always ascending teeth and is more strongly armed than any we observed.

Although the Standley description is quite good, we might comment on a few particulars. In addition to variability in the degree of spininess and size of spines, it should also be noted that the leaf sheaths are not totally "dark brown." The sheaths are somewhat inflated and conspicuously corrugate (figure 2) the large grooves running from base to blade. The sheath is dark brown only in a band at the junction with the blade where the scaly portion terminates. From there to the point of attachment the sheath (when fresh) is pale white to cream-colored and glabrous. The flowers are "azure blue." While Standley allied this species with P. goudotiana of Bogota, Colombia, it differs considerably from that species in its densely white lepidote lower leaf surface and in the much smaller and fewer marginal spines.

Sergio examining a spent infructescence of Puya dasylirioides.

The second Costa Rican species, Puya floccosa, subgenus PUYOPSIS was found by W. H. Hatheway, in February 1966, above the Finca "Los Helechales" located between Buenos Aires and Cerro Pittier in Costa Rica. The plants were reported, by Hatheway, to be found on a grassy open hillside "savanna" surrounded by oak forests. The open areas were said to have been former Indian burial grounds. This species can quite easily be distinguished from P. dasylirioides by its elongate conspicuous inflorescence branches, the open spreading habit, and the large light colored marginal spines that recurve or ascend. Close examination of old or fruiting stalks will immediately separate the two species. Puya floccosa has stiff, deeply concave, narrowly elongate persistent sepals which may be glabrate or with tufts of white or light colored scales. The sepals of P. dasylirioides are nearly flat, broadly acute and densely lepidote with tan or brown scales. It is not known to be in cultivation.


1) Department of Botany, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, D.C.
2) Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation. Carnegie-Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
3) Bromeliaceae Subfamily Pitcairnioideae, Flora Neotropica, monograph no. 14, 1974

IDENTIFICATION OF BROMELS or I Never Promised You a Rose Garden


People who collect bromels want to know their names. The commercial growers usually try very hard to apply the correct names before they sell any. Certainly most amateur growers want to have a name to attach to their plants. Collectors, buyers, distributors, growers all realize that here the problems can begin. If, for example, the plant is not in flower or fruit then the problem may remain unsolved until the plant matures. Trying to identify an isolated, unknown species of plant with no flowers or fruits is something like trying to identify a species of mammal without its bones. It's possible occasionally but not very often.

If the plant is mature, that is, in the process of flowering or has recently completed flowering, it should be possible to identify it but this still may be a difficult problem. One way is to simply ask a fellow enthusiast who seems to have some skill at accurately recognizing bromeliad species. And if the species is one which has been in the trade for awhile the problem may be quickly solved. But, if it's one of the increasing number of recent imports that no one knows yet, then what? The first thought often seems to be to send it to an authority for identification.

I am suggesting another solution. This alternative will take time, is often taxing and even frustrating but also fun and extremely rewarding. I suggest boning up on the vocabulary and using published keys for help in identification. Happily there are some good keys available and Lyman B. Smith's work of the last several decades is now culminating in the monograph to the entire family. Smith's (1971) Notes on Bromeliaceae, 1953 - 1971 has been available for several years. One big benefit of using keys (and even making keys yourself) is that you become much more familiar with the plants than otherwise would be likely. Another benefit to using keys is that you are not dependent upon someone else's judgment, but only upon your own skill and patience.

It is not always easy to use even the best key, as some of you know. It can be a very thorny problem. You must first of all know your plant very well and know precisely where to find all the flower's pertinent parts in order to use the key with satisfactory and satisfying results.

The only judgment involved when you use a key is your own. You decide: does each line of description fit your plant, and can your decision be just as valid as anyone's. The key is a kind of table, a short-hand with standard short-hand terms for describing each species included in the particular key. Descriptions encompassed in keys refer to the plant species as it was originally described and named (or modified in accord with rules).

For example, let's look at Dr. Edward McWilliams' (1968) key to species of Billbergia subgenus Billbergia published in the Journal of the Bromeliad Society 18 (1):8-10. A portion of this key is reproduced in Figure 1 as an example of a key to identification.

Firstly, what is the meaning of the term 'Subgenus' which heads this particular key? The genus Billbergia is usually considered to include two subgenera, Billbergia and Helicodea. The categories, genus, and subgenus represent part of the nested hierarchy of classification at the bottom of which is the botanical name, the genus and species. As examples, the classifications of man and Billbergia nutans are given below.

  CLASS  Mammalia  Angiospermae
    ORDER    Primates    Bromeliales
      FAMILY      Hominidae      Bromeliaceae
        GENUS        Homo        Billbergia
          SPECIES          sapiens          nutans
Each Phylum has several classes, each Class has at least several orders, each Order has several families, each Genus has usually several species or more. The name consists of Genus and species. There are many species of Billbergia, but there is only one Billbergia nutans, although there may be varieties of this species also. Each of the ranks in the classification hierarchy shown above can have subgroups so that starting with the family level we have:

Family Bromeliaceae
Subfamily Bromelioideae
Genus Billbergia
Subgenus Billbergia
species nutans
In looking at part of McWilliams' key in Figure 1 we see that we would have to know before we start, that the plant which we want to identify is a member of the Genus Billbergia. Perhaps we know this from prior experience or from using a different key to genera of the subfamily Bromelioideae, for example Smith (1971) pages 393-397.

Let's say that we have our unidentified Billbergia species in hand and that it has flowers so we are ready to try the key. The first decision to make is the choice between '1' - inflorescence compound and flowers sessile OR '1' - inflorescence simple. These two alternatives are each headed by the same number, 1. There are two '1's and our unidentified plant, if it is in the key, must fit the descriptions of either the first '1' OR the second '1' in the key. If our hypothetical plant has a compound inflorescence and flowers sessile (resting directly on the flowering stems) then we go to the next lead or choice to decide if '2' - petals are wholly blue OR '2' - petals partly blue.

If ours are wholly blue we go to the next choice, '3' - inflorescence smooth OR '3' - inflorescence lepidote.

If the inflorescence definitely has the little scales or trichomes, that is, is lepidote, then the next choice under '5' is to decide whether our plant has an erect inflorescence or a pendulous, drooping one. Let's say it is pendulous; then we must decide whether the upper floral bracts are minute and the plant has banded leaves OR the upper floral bracts are large and the leaves are green throughout. If the latter is true, we have identified our unknown plant as Billbergia bradeana.

Most keys are dichotomous like this one. This means that there are always two possibilities, two choices at each step in the key and you select one or the other. When we decided that the inflorescence was lepidote we didn't have to bother with all the descriptive sentences under the first number '3' but instead went directly to the next dichotomy, '5', under the second '3', inflorescence erect or inflorescence pendulous. When the species name is reached (we had to know the correct genus before-hand in order to start to use this particular key) we also know that our plant has all of the characteristics which we selected as we went through the key or followed the leads of the key, as they say. You may come to a place where neither choice will work - your plant simply does not have these characteristics. You'll then realize that you have made a wrong choice in a dichotomy somewhere earlier in the key. It happens to everyone sometime. Merely go back now and try again at the beginning and take a different lead in the key. It may take some time to get on the right path but persistence will get you there. It sounds fairly easy and it would be easy except for one thing - the vocabulary. The biggest problem in using any key to identification is not the mechanics of moving from one choice or dichotomy to the next. The problem lies in the correct interpretation of the words being used in the key. To use this small portion of the key to some 27 species included by McWilliams we had to understand the meanings of the terms inflorescence, compound, lepidote, sessile, and we had to know exactly where to locate the upper floral bracts, and the petal scales.

The system is easy but the words are not so simple at first. With this very real problem in mind, as well as memories of my own earlier struggles with bromeliad keys, the lists and definitions in Table 1 were prepared to include the most commonly found terms in keys to the genera and species of the Bromeliaceae. Perhaps in this way the use of certain more violent expletives when using keys can be kept to a minimum!

Table 1 consists of two parts. Part (a) is a list of 28 parts of the bromeliad plant which are most frequently described in keys to species of the family. This is followed by part (b), a longer list of 68 adjectives which are employed for describing these parts. It is important to remember that the descriptive adjectives referring to floral parts, often refer to these parts after they have been removed from the flower. For example, the shape of a sepal can usually only be ascertained after removing it from the flower. In the flower it is tightly wrapped around the flower center along with its fellow sepals. A sepal when pulled out gently can be flattened and the shape and size can be determined. It's not difficult with fresh material. It's more of a problem with dried material but still possible. Another aid to learning vocabulary is a paperback called How to Identify Plants by H. D. Herrington and L. W. Durrell (1975), published by The Swallow Press, 1139 Wabash Ave., Chicago, Illinois, 60605. Many features used in describing bromels are included and illustrated.

Some keys to bromeliad species have been cited by our editor in past issues of the Journal. In addition, McWilliams' key to the species of subgenus Billbergia is available and a portion was used in the above example. Gilmartin (1965, 1968) has keys to some species of the bromels which are native to Honduras and Ecuador respectively. Mez (1934, 1935) provided a key to all the species of bromeliads known up to that time. The keys in Smith (1971) are very inclusive and this publication is available from Clyde Reed, Reed Herbarium, 10105 Harford Rd., Baltimore, Md. 21234 for about $8.00. Smith's (1957) key to Bromeliaceae of Colombia, I have always found particularly good, but perhaps that is because I cut my teeth on that particular publication. Keys are no rose garden but with diligent use they immeasurably expedite the process of identification and equally important, help us to learn more about the plants.

To start out I'd suggest taking a known plant which you know is included in a small key. At first, avoid large keys. McWilliams' key would make a nice place to begin if you happen to have one of the commonly cultivated Billbergias. Or Gilmartin's (1972) key to the subgenus Phytarrhiza from Ecuador (pp 60-63) would be good, if you perhaps had a flowering Tillandsia cyanea to practice on. Try to reach the correct name by going through the key step by step. If you fail, work back through the key until you find the difficulty.

I expect that during the next few years we will be seeing more and more keys to different subgroups of bromels, and to bromels from specific geographic areas. For example, John Utley (1974) from Duke University (see Jour. Bromel. Soc. Jan.-Feb. 1974) is working with all the Vriesea species from Costa Rica. Perhaps he will be able to produce keys to these? I hope so. The more frequent and better use of keys that we have, the more each person will be able to enjoy his own self-reliance and increase and share his pool of knowledge by identifying accurately the species of this delightful plant family.

I would like to hear from anyone who is stimulated to try to use bromeliad keys; and criticisms and suggestions concerning the lists of definitions included here would be very welcome.

—Monterey, Ca. 93940

Figure 1 - A portion of the key to the subgenus Billbergia (McWilliams, 1968)

1. Inflorescence compound; flowers always sessile.
2. Petal blades wholly blue or violet above the sepals.
3. Inflorescence smooth.
4. Sepals setiform apex, orange or pink except for a blue apex; petals violet; inflorescence pendulous; leaves white banded in a tubular rosette ... B. vittata
4. Sepals not setiform, green except for a blue apex; petals blue; inflorescence erect or sub-erect; leaves green, in a funnel rosette ... B. buchholtzii
3. Inflorescence lepidote or flocculose.
5. Inflorescence erect, very laxly paniculate, petal scales lacinate; sepals green ... B. tweedieana
5. Inflorescence pendulous, not laxly paniculate, petal scales fimbriate.
6. Upper floral bracts minute, not hiding the ovary; inflorescence lepidote; leaves with pale bands; rhachis not geniculate; sepals blue only at the apex ... B. reichardtii
6. Upper floral bracts large, hiding the ovaries; inflorescence; white flocculose; leaves wholly green; rhachis geniculate; sepals wholly blue ... B. bradeana
2. Petal blades not wholly blue or violet above the sepals. etc.
1. Inflorescence simple ...

Table la - Parts of the Plant Used in Keys to Identification of Bromeliaceae.

anther The top of the stamen which sheds pollen.
apex Tip.
branch Axis or stem of a compound inflorescence whose flowers have pedicels.
capsule Mature dry fruit which eventually opens to shed the seeds.
flower All structures from and including the sepals inward.
filaments The slender stalks supporting each anther of a stamen.
floral bract The structure just below the flowers; may be leaf-like or colored.
indumentum The covering of leaves, bracts, etc.; in bromels this consists of trichomes.
inflorescence Flower-cluster including the axes or rhachises, the bracts, and the flowers.
internode The area between structures as the spike-internodes being the areas between each flower on the stem.
leaf-blade The upper portion of the leaf, beyond the rosette in most species.
leaf-sheath The lower portion of the leaf; that part forming the rosette, the basal and wider portion of the leaf.
limb The expanded part, as in the expanded portion of the petal.
ovary The organ inside the flower that will become the fruit after fertilization.
pedicel Stalk supporting each flower; when this is absent the flower is termed sessile.
petal scales The tiny flaps of tissue present on the inner surface of each petal in some species (for example, all Vriesea.)
pistil The female and central portion of a flower; usually hidden by the sepals it consists of ovary, style and stigma.
primary bract Structure at base of each branch; present only in a compound inflorescence, often leaf-like though it may be colored.
rhachis The axis or stem; as the rhachis of the inflorescence to which the flowers are attached.
rosette Basal cluster of leaves, circular in arrangement.
scape The axis below the inflorescence.
scape-bracts The structures borne on the scape, may be leaf-like or colored.
sepals The three structures just inside each floral bract. There are three and as a unit they are called the calyx.
spike An axis of an inflorescence with sessile flowers.
stamens The male portion (six usually) consisting of the anther at the top supported by a special stalk called the filament.
stigma The top of the female portion of a flower which receives pollen from the anther.
style The area of the female portion of a flower between ovary and stigma.
trichome The scales on the leaves of most bromels; absorptive organs.

Table lb - Adjectives used to describe parts of the Bromeliaceae.

acuminate Tapering to a sharp point with sides pinched in, as in 'leaf-apices acuminate'.
acute Coming to a sharp point with sides nearly straight as 'sepals or floral bracts with apices acute'.
alate Winged. An outgrowth of tissue around the structure in question.
anthesis The period of flower opening (usually also the time of anther maturity when pollen is ripe.)
apiculate An abruptly slender tip which is not particularly stiff, as 'leaf-apices apiculate'.
ascending Curving slightly outward and then upward, as in "branches ascending."
bicarinate Having two keels or central ridges, as in 'floral bracts bicarinate.'
bipinnate A once-compound inflorescence in which the flowers are borne on secondary spikes or rhachises rather than on the simple extension of the scape.
bisexual Flowers with both male (stamen) and female (pistil) parts.
carinate Keeled. Having a single central ridge, as in 'floral bracts, sepals carinate.'
castaneous Chestnut brown in color, often applied to the leaf sheath.
caulescent Having a leafy stem i.e., leaves borne all along a stem (contrasts with fasciculate.)
compound An inflorescence with more than a single floral branch or spike.
concolorous Of a color, i.e., the same color throughout, as in 'leaf-sheaths concolorous with leaf-blades.'
connate Applied to sepals, two of which have their margins posteriorly joined for part of their length, in which case each sepal is often carinate.
coriaceous Thick, leathery in texture.
cucullate Hooded, not easily flattened without tearing, as in 'floral bracts hooded.'
dense The flowers' degree of closeness to each other. 'inflorescence dense' would indicate that the flowers are probably touching one another at the very least.
digitate Parts radiating out from very near the same point as in 'inflorescence digitate' meaning spikes or branches growing from one central point not distributed along the length of axis or rhachis.
dioecious Literally: two-houses; meaning the male and female flowers are on different, individual plants.
dimorphic Literally: two-forms, for example as in 'leaves dimorphic' in which case some leaves may be very short and spiny and other leaves long and entire.
distichous Two sides, attached on two sides of an axis, as in 'flowers distichous.' (Contrasts with polystichous.)
distinct Separate, as in 'petals distinct'; meaning not joined at edges.
ecarinate No central ridge or keel, as in 'floral bracts, sepals ecarinate.'
elliptic Shaped like an ellipse, broadest at the center, tapering equally to base and apex, as in 'sepals elliptic'.
entire Applied usually to leaf-margins or bract-margins; meaning absence of teeth or lobes.
erect Applied to flowers or floral bracts which stand up nearly parallel to the rhachis to which they are attached.
exserted Protruding, as in 'stamens exserted beyond the petals.'
fasciculate In bundles or tight clusters not strung out.
fimbriate Margins having a delicate fringe of hair-like structures.
flocculose Tufted.
geniculate Bent abruptly like a knee, may describe the rhachis of a branch or spike.
glabrous Smooth, bald, not lepidote, i.e., not having scales.
imbricate Overlapping like shingles.
inferior The position of the ovary relative to bases of sepals and petals, in which the ovary sits in a position inferior to or below these structures.
lanate Tangled, wooly hairs.
lax The term is applied to the inflorescence and describes the degree of closeness of the flowers. 'Inflorescence lax' would indicate that the flowers are probably not touching one another.
lepidote Having scales (trichomes), a key character of the family Bromeliaceae. A scaly appearance. These may be fine and scarcely visible to the naked eye or they may be course and spreading and high visible.
lepidote without Having scales (trichomes) on the outer surface (without) as on the outer surface of floral bracts.
lacinate Margins cut into narrow lobes.
linear Long and narrow with the proportions of length to width being 12:1 or greater.
ligulate (also lingulate) Strap shaped, as in 'leaves ligulate.'
membranous Thin, almost papery in texture.
monoecious Literally: one house, meaning there are male and female flowers which are on the same individual plant.
mucronate An apex having a short tooth-like tip.
nerved With the veins plainly showing, as in 'sepals nerved.' or 'floral bract nerved.'
obovate Broader toward the apex than toward the base.
obtuse Blunt or rounded, as in 'sepals or floral bract apices obtuse.'
orbicular Round or very nearly so.
ovate Oval or egg shaped, broader toward the base.
paniculate An inflorescence which is compound, i.e., consisting of more than a single spike or branch.
plicate Applied to the filament (stalks holding the stamens) when these are much folded.
plumose appendaged Applied to seeds of the subfamily Tillandsioideae in which each seed has appendages of many fine, long hairs.
polystichous Attached all the way around the axis, as in 'flowers polystichous' (contrasts with distichous.)
repand-serrate Toothed on wavy edges as in 'leaf repand-serrate.'
serrate Toothed, with teeth pointing toward apex.
sessile Without a stalk as in 'flowers sessile', flower rests directly on stem.
sepals asymmetric The shape of the sepal when flattened is such that one side is notably larger than the other, not symmetrical.
setiform Like a bristle.
simple An inflorescence with a single flower spike or branch, i.e., the rhachis of an inflorescence consists entirely of the simple continuation of the scape to which flowers or flower pedicels are directly attached, with no intervening branches.
stamens exserted Stamens extending well beyond the tips of petals.
superior The position of the ovary relative to bases of sepals and petals in which the ovary sits in a position superior to, or above, the sepal and petal bases.
terete Round in cross-section, as 'inflorescence-axis terete.'
tomentose Dense, wooly like covering; short hairs matted in appearance.
triangular With sides not parallel.
tripinnate A twice-compound inflorescence in which the flowers are borne on tertiary spikes or branches.
uncinate Hooked near the apex as in 'uncinate teeth' on leaf margins of some species of the subfamily Bromelioideae.
villous Long, tangled, soft hairs.
zygomorphic Not radially symmetrical but with petals of each flower nonidentical to one another in shape or size.

Literature Cited

Gilmartin, Amy Jean. 1965 Las Bromeliacias de Honduras. Ceiba 11 (2):1-81
_________________. 1972. The Bromeliaceae of Ecuador. Phaner. Monog. vol. 4:1-255 plus plates, Verlag Von J. Cramer. 3301 Lehre, Germany.
Harrington, H. D. and L. W. Durrell, 1957. How To Identify Plants, Swallow Press, 203 pp.
McWilliams, Edward L. 1968. The Subgenus Billbergia in cultivation. Jour. Bromel. Soc. 18:8-16.
Mez, Carl. 1934. Bromeliaceae. in Engler's Das Pflanzenreich 4 (32):1-160.
________. 1935. Bromeliaceae. in Engler's Das Pflanzenreich 4 (32):161-667.
Smith, Lyman B. 1957. The Bromeliaceae of Colombia. Contr. U.S. National Herbarium 33:1-311.
______________. 1971. Notes on Bromeliaceae—xxxiii. reprinted from Phytologia 1953-1971. Cont. Reed Herb 22:1-666.
Utley, John. 1974. A new variety of Vriesea from the Cordillera Central of Costa Rica. Jour. Bromel. Soc. 24(1):16-17



I have charge of the grounds of the Honolulu Art Academy and also make all the flower arrangements that are on display there each week. It has been my pleasure to do this as a volunteer for over twenty-five years and during that time have trained many girls in the art of flower arranging.

I use bromeliads very often and have taken potted plants and flower spikes when they are the kind that will last for at least a week. One of my favorites is Aechmea mulfordii, shown in the illustration above. The spikes shown are already four months old, but they can be used over and over again for years in dry arrangements. The leaves used in this arrangement are not those of the aechmea but of Billbergia pyramidalis.

The dried or fresh inflorescences of Guzmania lingulata have also become standard material for my arrangements. The inflorescences are effective even after five months on the plants. We get mileage out of these fine bromels.

For an evening function at the Academy, Billbergia pyramidalis blooms make unusually fine arrangements for the punch table.

Tillandsia cyanea, in three-foot low dark Chinese pots, with forty to fifty growing heads of remain for months in one of the garden courts of the Academy when these tillandsias are at their best.

Portea petropolitana var. extensa is often used before the berries become too heavy and droop. Aechmea lueddemanniana plants and berries also get into arrangements as does Aechmea 'Foster's favorite.' Plants of Cryptanthus bromelioides var. tricolor are also favorites for arranging.

—Honolulu, Hawaii



Guzmania dissitiflora: Color of Flower. A small plant I believe to be Guzmania dissitiflora, as it matches the descriptions in most respects, has come into bloom. The open long-lasting inflorescence in bright red and yellow has at length displayed its flowers. They are not white (Bromeliaceae of Colombia L. B. Smith) or yellow (Bromeliads in color V. Padilla,) but green. A color picture in the Bulletin (1963, No. 2) shows them as almost orange, but the colors as printed may be not quite true. There is an oddity about the flowering: not all of the buds, apparently, opened after I brought the plant indoors from the greenhouse for closer observation (lower humidity indoors?). The ones that did open, in both locations, stayed open during the day; with the rest that I watched, the buds were extended but then merely shriveled. Or if they did open, they did so and closed again during the night, which seems hardly likely. If those having this species would submit their observations we could determine whether there are distinct color phases of it. If so, varietal names may be in order.

—Winter Garden, Fla.

TILLANDSIA EDITHAE Rauh, A New Species from Bolivia


Fig. 1 T. edithae

One of the most striking discoveries of tillandsias found in South America is T. edithae (See cover). This beautiful species grows on steep rock-walls at an altitude of about 2700 m near Sorota, Department of La Paz in Bolivia. It is closely related to T. calocephala Wittm., which grows under similar ecological conditions in southern Peru, but T. edithae differs from it by the simple inflorescences and the brilliant red flowers, while T. calocephala has compound inflorescences and blue-violet flowers.

Tillandsia edithae forms big masses and clumps on steep rock-walls and has elongated (up to 3-5 cm), hanging stems with ascending tips (Fig. 1). The short triangular leaves are arranged polystichous (Fig. 1); the white sheathes are not distinct; the short blades are 5 to 6 cm long, above the sheath 2-2,5 cm wide, somewhat succulent and pruinose lepidote on both sides (Fig. 1-2). The scape is very short, 3-5 cm long, about 5 mm thick, round, green, glabrous and completely covered by the polystichous arranged, subfoliate, densely gray lepidote scape bracts (Fig. 2); the upper ones often form a kind of involucrum beyond the simple, capitate inflorescence (Fig. 2); this is about 4 cm long, 2 cm in diameter and has 8-12 polystichous arranged flowers (Fig. 2-3). The floral bracts are shorter than the sepals; the basal ones are short laminated, the upper ones only apiculate, ecarinate, cucullate, about 2 cm and 1,9 cm wide, greenish at the base, reddish at the tips and densely grey lepidote beneath.

Fig. 2 & 3 T. edithae

The posterior sepals are carinate, the anterior one ecarinate; all are nearly free, membranaceous, white and sparsely lepidote. The petals are up to 3 cm long, and 4 mm broad and slightly spreading at their rounded tips (Fig. 3); their upper half is of a bright red color (see cover), the base whitish. The stamens and the style are deeply included.

When flowering, T. edithae is really a very attractive, small rock-Tillandsia. Unfortunately it is not easy to grow under cultivation, for it needs low temperatures, high intensities of light, and not too much water.

The plant was dedicated to Edith Blass, the wife of the well-known tillandsia grower, A. Blass of Munich, who introduced the plant to Europe and in whose collection the plant first came into flower. For the Latin diagnosis see "Tropische und Subtropische Pflanzenwelt," Bromelienstudien 2. Mitteilung.

—Institut fur Systematische Botanik der Universitat, Heidelberg.

Bromeliad Round Robin — If you live off the beaten path of bromeliad growers and would like to exchange ideas with other growers, why not join the Bromeliad Round Robin. For information write to the director: Mrs. Velva Jane Watson, 8615 Jackson Springs Road, Tampa, Florida 33615.

Type of Water Can Affect insecticide — If you have been spraying your bromeliads with recommended insecticides to get rid of scale, and still have not gotten rid of the pests, it may be due to the type of water you have been using.

"Water from municipal supplies is generally alkaline in nature and therefore reduces the effectiveness of many insecticides when used in preparing a spray solution." points out Dr. Charles Cole of Texas A & M University.

So what is the solution?

"Using distilled water helps," says Dr. Cole. "Also, rain water is good to use in mixing insecticides. The rain water will not only put more life in the insect sprays you prepare, but it's also better for watering flowers, pot plants and the like."

—Winter Garden, Fla.



My affair with Aechmea chantinii began in the summer of 1958—in the church of S. Vitale in Ravenna, Italy, to be specific. I was one of a group of tourists listening to the guide describing the famed mosaics, when above his droning voice came the muffled call "Victoria." I glanced at Mother, but she shrugged and muttered that it must be another Victoria, for no one knew that I was in that part of the world. However, when the name was repeated, followed by the word "bromeliad," Mother nodded and said, "That's you, all right."

In wonderment I edged myself to the back of the crowd and there saw Brian Connelly, a well-known artist from New York and a fellow bromeliad enthusiast, who has espied me amongst the throng. He had just come from Belgium, he said, and there had purchased the most extraordinary bromeliad it had been his good fortune to purchase. The nursery had had just two of these plants, and now there was only one left—I had better get it in a hurry. When I finally reached Ghent some two months later, luckily for me that plant was still there. Nobody knew what it was, but that it was unique was unquestionable. I remember I paid the equivalent of $2.50 for a superb specimen of what turned out to be the rare European form of Aechmea chantinii. I had never heard of this bromeliad before; so far as I knew there was no one in southern California who had anything like it.

It was easy to fall in love with this plant. Elegant in form and marking and spectacular when in bloom, it immediately became the favorite among all my bromeliads. It was generous with offshoots, too, and within a year, several growers were given pups of this fine plant.

The story of Aechmea chantinii is an interesting one. It is indigenous to the upper Amazon, growing in abundance around Iquitos, Peru. It was first described by Baker in 1889, who wrote that it was introduced into French gardens by M. Baraquin in 1877. Although the word "garden" was used, A. chantinii is definitely a greenhouse plant even in temperate regions, for despite its robust appearance, it is tender and it must have warmth and humidity at all times.

So far as it can be determined, no more specimens of this plant were collected because the location of its habitat was forgotten. Collectors who went to Peru tended to collect at higher elevations rather than along the hot, humid Amazon. For years, the only plants that were available to collectors were the suckers produced from these first few imports. Why did not the growers produce seeds of this plant? Well, for some strange reason, the first plants were evidently sterile and not capable of producing seed, and each of the suckers produced from these plants inherited this characteristic.

However, growers were able to cross A. chantinii with other species, and many hybrids were made. Most notable was the cross made by L. Dutrie with A. fulgens, which he called A. × fulgo-Chantinii. Although the bold banding of A. chantinii did not carry over into its hybrids, these crosses were strikingly beautiful plants. They had leaves of every shade from olive green to reddish brown, and a thickly flowering inflorescence rising well above the foliage, coming in a variety of warm, bright colors, from canary yellow, through orange and salmon-pink to coral red.

It was not until 1960 that the habitat of A. chantinii was rediscovered by a collector named Lee Moore, who found it growing along parts of the Amazon River in Peru, attaching itself to smooth barked trees often in full sunlight. Trunks as high as thirty feet would be completely covered with this plant. There always seemed to be some specimens in flower, and their brilliant inflorescences would brighten up the otherwise dark jungle.

Moore sent a number of plants to Florida, where they attracted the attention of the nurseryman, Mr. Jack Holmes of Tampa. He would not be satisfied until he himself went to Iquitos, and with the assistance of Lee Moore collected hundreds of this aechmea for his establishment. The plants he brought back came in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors. Most of them were much larger than those grown in Europe, but unfortunately lacking the graceful form and clear-cut banding of the early imports.

Whereas the cultivated European type measured 10 to 12 inches both ways, these new plants grew as tall as 2½ feet and almost as wide. There was a very wide variation in the banding and shape within these new jungle species. Some had some gray foliage and silver banding with a pink inflorescence; others were definitely tubular in shape; some had dark red to almost black leaves with silver banding. Some had no banding at all. Two varieties that Mr. Holmes introduced he called Aechmea 'Red Goddess' and Aechmea 'Pink Goddess.' These are pictured in Volume XII, No. 6, pages 110 and 111 of the Bromeliad Society Journal.

What made this undertaking of Jack Holmes so notable was that for the first time he had enough plants at his command to be able to experiment with them to see if he could get them to set seed. After a round-the-clock vigil he discovered that by pollinating the plants in the early hours before dawn, he was better able to secure seed and so provide enough plants of Aechmea chantinii to meet the great demand for this plant. It is probably true that there are very few collections today that do not possess at least one plant of Aechmea chantinii.

What has bothered this writer for many years is why it took so long for plantsmen to rediscover this bromeliad. In 1964 she went to Iquitos herself (See Vol. XV, No. 2) to see these plants growing in their homeland. In and around Iquitos (which is a sizable city) she saw them everywhere—even growing on fences in the town itself. The greatest shock of all was to see a great mound of this precious aechmea in the refuse area just outside the pits where snakes were kept just before they were shipped to foreign parts. They were so common as to be considered weeds!

Bromeliad growers have wasted no time in trying their hand at crossing A. chantinii, but none of these crosses, in this writer's opinion, can hold a candle to the original chantinii that she first saw and fell in love with in Belgium. A. chantinii seems to be a weak parent, and nearly always the offspring carries the characteristics of the other parent. A glance at a recent catalogue discloses that chantinii has been crossed with Aechmeas 'Bert,' bromeliifolia, fasciata, fulgens discolor, nudicaulis, orlandiana, ramosa, recurvata, and Quesnelia marmorata, to name just a few.

—Los Angeles, California



While visiting the Botanic Garden at Berlin, I was fortunate to get behind the scenes and see where they raise thousands of seedlings, especially grey tillandsias. It was interesting to note that they use two methods of starting seedlings. Sometimes they use a man-made material, a tissue-like insulation compound of spongy character, which stays damp but never soaking wet, and the size of the pores is just right to hold average sized seeds. They also use the method of sowing on spruce bundles rather successfully. I was shown a forest of these sticks covered with seedlings from one-half inch to 3 inches and more hanging from a lath contraption.

I was also shown how to start a spruce bundle. Take two twigs of thuja or other coniferous plants, about one foot long by ¼ inch thick, take off only part of the side branches and wrap around more but thinner branches until the bundle has a diameter of approximately 1½ to 2 inches. To give this contraption a more solid body, tie both ends together with a wire and cut off any side branches which stick too far out. The next step is to distribute the tillandsia seed equally over the spruce bundle and wrap the whole thing with a nylon thread to prevent the seed from being blown away by the wind. Then water the bundle with a fog nozzle.

The late Dr. Oeser of Freiberg was probably the first to introduce this method, and it is used now by many with good success. As Dr. Oeser pointed out, many factors are responsible for the success in using coniferous material. The still living branches evaporate and keep the air within the bundle cool and damp; also the acidity of the sap seems to be helpful in germination. It appears that plants of the cypress family contain tree gum which obviously prevents bacteria and fungi to develop, and consequently the loss caused by damping off is at a minimum.

I have just received a letter from Berlin describing another method they are using to germinate bromeliad seed. They use planting trays filled with peat or a mixture of peat and soil, derived from the needles of the pine, and sow right on top of this medium. These trays are put in plant beds, which are heated by a cable up to 85°F.

I personally have equally good success by using fresh sphagnum moss as a medium, not only for tillandsia seed but also for most other bromeliads. I dip the moss in a solution of Chinosol as a fungicide (1 tablet to 1 glass of water) and also use the same solution to dip the seed before sowing. Naturally, any other disinfectant to prevent growth of bacteria and fungi can be used. Using plastic margarine cups with holes at the bottom and a pane of glass as a cover, I sow directly on top of the damp moss, keeping the container untouched in the greenhouse until the seedlings are about one inch tall; then I transplant them into community pots. It is advisable in the first place not to oversow the moss and secondly to take only the strongest seedlings for transplanting and to forget about the weaklings.

The other day I learned how to get roots on offshoots (which have no roots) rather quickly. One of our members uses glass jars or bottles with openings according to the diameter of the plants, fills the container with about one inch of water, and then puts the offshoots into the bottle neck.

The cut should not touch the surface of the water, and in due time roots will form to reach the liquid. Try it, you will like it, but pot the plant before the roots get too long and leggy.

Something else: Do you know that the space and place on the top of your refrigerator has during the 24-hour day the most stabilized temperature in your home? So if you want to raise anything from seed or wish to start roots on offshoots and have no hothouse, the top of your icebox is the next best substitute.

With regard to what medium in which to grow offshoots (with or without roots), I have come across something new. After trying vermiculite, perlite, sand, redwood bark, or what have you, I have tried the newest craze—turkey grit. I have no idea what it does to bromeliads, aside from the fact that by its own weight, it gives the often top heavy shoots a solid support. But the fact is that I have found that in this medium roots form in no time at all and there is no sign of rotting. This could be because the grits don't hold any water for any length of time. It definitely works, and we certainly believe in it.

—Culver City, Calif.




Even though I am still fairly new at growing bromeliads, I thought I could contribute something that might inspire other members to construct a tree, even in the coldest parts of the country.

I was asked by the Indoor Light Gardening Society to construct a bromeliad tree for the Boston Flower Show last spring. The person who asked me was not sure of the size desired, but said, "Oh, it's just for a table in the background." So I planted several small neoregelias on a beautiful piece of Scotch pine. About two weeks before the show, I felt I had better be sure this size was what was really needed and contacted the designer of the show. She said things had changed, and she expected a tree at least six feet tall and it would have a spotlight of its own. I was delighted with this idea, but knew the tree I had made was much too small, and I had very little time to work on a larger tree.

In February up north, where do you find a suitable tree? There was not even a branch or piece of nice big driftwood to be found on the beach. Luckily, we had no snow this past winter, and I have 250 acres of woods to roam about in. I combed the area for about two hours, and finally found a beautiful Hemlock tree devoid of needles. It could have been someone's Christmas tree. My dog also liked this tree, and I was lucky to drag it home without any teethmarks!

I pruned the tree down to a manageable size (to fit in my car) and took a few days spraying it and then washing the spray off, just to be sure there would be no bugs that would come alive at the show. Then I cemented the base of the tree into a redwood container. I gathered several bucketsful of sphagnum moss from the nearby swamps to wrap around the roots. I poured boiling water over the moss to sterilize the medium (It smelled terrible at first).

Then I assembled all the plants I thought suitable for the tree and worked out a plan on paper. Some of the plants were chosen just for the show because they were in bloom, and others were selected to be more permanent. I started with big plants for the base and smaller ones for the top and the ends of branches. I drilled small holes in the back of the tree and branches where the plants were to be attached. Screw eyes were put in and the plants attached with a ball of sphagnum on the roots with nylon fishing line. (I have since become an expert at tying "fishing" knots!) If the roots were not in a compact ball, they were put into "panty hose" feet and the sphagnum wrapped around the stocking. I used several aechmeas, billbergias, neoregelias, and cryptanthus. Tillandsias were placed at the top. It took several days to achieve an artistic effect.

Transporting the tree is another story in itself, but it made a grand entrance at the show. I was amazed at some of the comments, because quite a few people thought it was a real tree, and many had never seen anything like it before. The cool beam spotlights cast a very interesting silhouette.

After being in Boston for a week, the tree was later invited to be a part of an exhibit at the Copley Plaza for the Garden Federation in May. So, again it went to Boston and spent four days in a less humid atmosphere. In October it was also on exhibit at the Indoor Light National Convention at the Copley Plaza. I almost lost Cryptanthus 'Cascade' and 'It,' but feel this tree is just the beginning of bromeliads in New England, and now it has some history of its own.

At present the tree is spending the winter in an unheated (not below freezing) room. I am anxious to know how long it will take for the roots to penetrate the wood. How well the tree will last, or how long, I don't know, but it was worth the experience.

—Manchester, Massachusetts



Ed Ensign was a great and lovable man. Both people and plants benefited from his passage through the world of horticulture. Ed was born in up-state New York, an area not known for producing individuals full of self-importance. He was no exception to the generalization. Mouse-quiet about his accomplishments, few bromeliad lovers realize that some of the plants that they treasure most originated in his Orlando, Florida, greenhouse in post World War II days.

Undoubtedly, in this wide world, there are many fine bromeliad seed growers; let his name be placed high in their ranks. From his glass seed trays came Aechmea orlandiana var. ensign, Aechmea lueddemanniana var. Mend, and another variegated aechmea, Aechmea mariae-reginae, which now exists only in the recollection of Mrs. Mary Heinlein, for alas, the single specimen perished after she had received it in a shipment of the green form.

Before me is a small dog-eared copy of Ed's planting record of bromeliad seeds, species and hybrids, over a period of perhaps half a dozen years. Though it indicates a sowing of 407 different kinds, this total represents but a portion of the material that passed through his skillful hands during the thirty-five or forty years of his never flagging romance with bromeliads.

Perhaps the person most beholden to Ed is the author of this small memorial. For years every bromeliad seed that came into my possession went straight to him for sowing and hopefully, growing on. What fun we had, hanging over the trays with their dots of green, or watching the hair-like Vriesea efforts that took such an interminable time to grow to potting size.

Through the courtesy of the late Ralph Davis of North Miami, Florida, came a packet of hybrid Neoregelia seeds from East Germany, which produced two, or possibly three, outstanding plants. Ed named his #290, Neoregelia × 'Avalon', and in days to come it will receive wide acceptance: my #290, quite different, but equally lovely, vanished through the medium of some human predator, only recently. Another interesting group of plants was raised from a cross of Nidularium innocentii var. innocentii × Nidularium innocentii var. lineatum. Ed decided that the best had a rather dwarf red leaf, marked with very fine lines, and, unfortunately, not easy to grow.

Ed also grew an Aechmea lueddemanniana from seed: several of them, in fact, which go through an orderly cycle from lueddemanniana green to near albino and then back to green again, without shedding a leaf.

One of the best of all of the variegated plants he grew from seed were several forms of Neoregelia × marmorata × with longitudinal stripes in addition to the customary mottling. It is bright red, with a white or yellowish stripe, depending on the amount of sun the plant receives. The plants have not attained maturity yet. For the sake of bromeliad collectors in days to come, this plant is not to be confused with a variegated sport of Neoregelia × marmorata which turned up in my planting at Gotha, Florida, in 1971.

That Ed grew to maturity from seed more variegated species and hybrids than anyone I have ever read about seems entirely reasonable. Some years ago I used Aechmea caudata var. variegata as both a seed and pollen parent, and as a result, Ed grew tray after tray of Aechmea hybrids.

Neither he nor I ever counted the variegated plants that appeared sparsely among the various crosses, but assuredly there must have been eight or ten different hybrids represented. The plants range from massive to very small, but in every instance, the variegation is a sharp, clear white. We were going to write an article about this singular genetic power of Aechmea caudata var. variegata, the ability to pass on variegation to its hybrids, but Ed hated to write and procrastination on my part let the years roll by until now.

This is not the article we meant to write, but it is one that I owe to as good a friend as man ever had: an opportunity to refer briefly to a few of the things his innate modesty would have kept him from ever mentioning.

—Gotha, Florida

Editor's Note: Julian Nally, the author of the above article, is one of the pioneer bromeliad growers in this country, having purchased his first plants in the 1930's. He became the owner of the famous Nehrling estate in Central Florida and planted bromeliads throughout his large acreage. For a description of his experiences see his article "Bromeliads by the Acre," in the Society's Cultural Handbook, which is now available in its third printing. Mr. Nally has always been enthusiastic bromeliad grower and has made a number of fine crosses, the best known probably being Aechmea 'Maginali,' a handsome plant named in honor of his wife Maggie.


In June of this year all roads for Bromeliad buffs will lead to Buena Park in southern California, the site of the Silver Anniversary Celebration. Buena Park (southeast of Los Angeles) is situated in Orange County, once a great citrus growing district, but now, because of its salubrious climate, the home of approximately a million people. It is the home, too, of the world famed Disneyland and Knott's Berry Farm, as well as a number of outstanding beach resorts, notably Laguna Beach, San Clemente, and Newport Beach.

It is a fun place, and it is sincerely hoped that those who plan to attend the 25th Birthday of the Bromeliad Society will allow themselves time to enjoy this area, as well as San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.

Southern California abounds in beautiful gardens, the most notable being the Huntington Garden in San Marino. Here is located the Desert Garden, one of the largest of its kind in the nation where can be seen many large old specimens of puyas, hechtias, dyckias, bromelias, and other xerophytic bromeliads. Nearby is the Los Angeles County and State Arboretum, which also houses a sizable bromeliad planting. Throughout southern California, and more particularly the coastal areas, are to be found many fine bromeliad collections, many of which are grown outdoors the year round. The climate is generally mild, the rainy season being limited to just the winter months. This is truly the "land of little rain," and the lush growth of the tropics is not to be found here although many of the gardens would seem to belie this fact.

For those who have the time, a trip north is a must if one is to obtain a true appreciation of California. Just a half day's drive away from Los Angeles is Sequoia National Park, with its giant redwoods, one of the most inspiring spots in the world. Farther north are Yosemite, the Monterey Coast, and finally San Francisco, a beautiful city and a tourist's delight.

Full particulars as to excursions may be made by your travel agent or arrangements made after you arrive. Reservations should not be difficult, as the tourist season does not start until after the middle of June.

Full particulars as to the 25th Anniversary celebration were given in Issue No. 1. If further information is needed, please write to Mrs. Kathy Dorr, 6153 Hayter Avenue, Lakewood, California 90712. Reservations should be made as soon as possible. It is hoped that many members and their families will attend this event and so meet fellow enthusiasts and see bromeliads growing at their best.

Office Of The Treasurer
8109 Carnation Drive
Buena Park, Calif. 90620
Phone 523-4545



Balance on hand Jan. 1, 1974
1 Share of Burrough Stock
Home Savings & Loan 4 year term
Home Savings & Loan 1 year term
Total Assets at beginning of Year29,931.49

Membership dues
Note Paper
Sale of Pins
Bromeliads Care & Cultural Pamphlets
Sale of Old Journals
Journal (Color Print)
Seed Fund
Sale of Reprints of Volume 1 through 15
Slide Library (rentals)
Interest From Savings & Loan
Sale of Medallions
Woodshop (sale of plaques)
Handbooks (refund of sales tax)
Show Fund (refund of sales tax)
Show Fund (sale of plants)
Postage, (paid in advance)
TOTAL INCOME$23,754.52

Note Paper
Show Fund
Old Journal
Secretarial Expense
Slide Library
Volume 1 through 15
Bad Check
$ 734.77

Net Worth:
General Fund, 1-1-75
Show Fund
Total Cash in Bank 1-1-75
1 Share of Burrough Stock
Home Savings & Loan 4 year term,
1-1-75 Balance
Home Savings & Loan 1 year term,
1-1-75 Balance


Ken Kennedy

Nidularium billbergioides (Schultes f.) L. B. Smith is a charming small, upright-growing species native to southern Brazil. If differs from the regular conception of a nidularium in that the inflorescence, instead of being deep in the heart of the plant, appears on the end of a stem, usually 9 to 10 inches above the center of the plant. The leaves are soft, medium to dark green, and measure up to 20 inches in length and 1½ inches in width. The bracts are either burnt orange in color or bright yellow—this latter usually being called var. citrinum. Petals are white. The species is generous with offshoots, the new plants appearing on the ends of stolons. This graceful plant is easy to grow. It is tidy in habit and the inflorescence lasts in color for several months, thus making it good houseplant.

The plant pictured above is of the variegated form that originated in the nursery of Hans Gulz in West Germany and now available in nurseries in the United States. In every way it is similar to the plain green leaved species. Mr. Gulz also grows a form with dark red foliage which he calls folia rubra.

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