Flowering Aechmea fasciata


I have an “urn plant”, otherwise known as Aechmea fasciata, which was given to me as a sucker by my Grandmother. It is native to Brazil and grows as an epiphyte on trees in moist tropical forest. It’s also cultivated as a house plant. Due to its epiphytic habit it doesn’t draw up much water through its roots, instead preferring to have water poured into the basal rosette. As it grows, juveniles grow as suckers from the base, which can be snipped off when they’re big enough and grown in a separate pot. I’ve given away four or five babies so far, and they are quite popular as gifts.

It doesn’t flower very often in my experience, maybe once every 2-3 years, but when it does it looks excellent. The bud emerges from the centre of the basal rosette and can take a long time to grow to full size, a few months probably.

Early bud

The flowers themselves are only quite small. They have a lavender colour that fades to pink as the flowers wilt. The main showy parts of the inflorescence are the bracts, I think they’re bracts anyway, which are bright pink and much larger than the flowers.

Full bloom