Most varieties of bromeliads are excellent plants for mounting. They are epiphytic not parasitic and present no threat to the tree on which they are mounted. Their strong, wiry roots are for attachment only.
There are many mediums you may use for mounting bromeliads – trunks and branches of trees (do not select trees that shed their bark), driftwood, even rocks. The trunks of tree ferns or old bases of Stag or Elk horns are excellent.
Mounting these plants presents a most attractive means of displaying them. Many bromeliads such as Billbergias are even more attractive when viewed from below with light showing through the foliage, emphasizing the beautiful colours and markings.
To successfully mount a bromeliad chose a young plant. Select a position on your chosen base, preferably a hollow or at the junction of a branch, somewhere that gives some purchase. If using a rock as a base the plant may be placed in a hollow or crevice and kept firm by plugging with small pieces of wood or rock but ensure that there is natural drainage as if water is allowed to collect at the base of the plant it will be likely to rot and die.
Tie the young plant on firmly. (Old nylon pantyhose are ideal for this purpose.) If using wire please ensure that it is plastic covered . A small amount of glue may be used but ensure that the glue does not contain silicon as this is detrimental to the plant. Make sure the plant is firmly attached as if allowed to move in the breeze it will be unlikely to make firm root attachment. A small amount of spaghnum moss may be placed around the base but is not essential.
Water your plant regularly and you will find that it will attach and grow into a beautiful clump in a very short space of time. Regular foliar fertilising with half strength liquid fertiliser in the warmer months will ensure a great result.
Most bromeliads can be successfully mounted – Tillandsias, Billbergias, Neoregelias and Vrieseas – but do not choose plants from the Cryptanthus genus, as this group is considered to be terrestrial and will not thrive as a mounted plant.
Aechmea ‘Bert’ mounted on tree branch
Neoregelia compacta Elkhorn base