Gloriosa lily.

Last month I shared information about three of my favorite funky flowers: Spiral ginger, Dutchman’s pipe and Hoya. We felt three favorites were not enough, and six would be much better. This article includes Tillandsia, gloriosa lily and Chinese hat.

Bromeliad and Tillandsia are members of the pineapple family. There are 16 native Bromeliad species and approximately 85 native species of ‘air plants’ in Florida.

Bromeliads are slow-growing. Some prefer sun, and others prefer shade. Tillandsia live on other plants but do not live off them. They are epiphytes, not parasites. Propagation is from ‘pups’ produced by the mother plant.

Gloriosa lilies are a fast-growing perennial that can reach a height and spread of 2-8 feet. It has medium drought-tolerance, prefers partial shade/partial sun and performs well in full shade. This plant produces gorgeous flowers that are crimson/yellow-orange. Mine are in pots and the ground with trellising support.

The Chinese hat plant has a moderate growth rate and can reach a height and spread of 5-8 feet. It requires irrigation during dry seasons. Chinese hat plants prefer partial shade/partial sun and produces bright orange/red flowers that look like a hat. It works well as a hedge, border or specimen plant. For more information, see “Holmskioldia sanguinea” by Edward F. Gilman at

For more information on Bromeliad and Tillandsia, please see the University of Florida publication “Florida’s Native Bromeliads” by Barbra C. Larson, J. Howard Frank, Ginger M. Allen and Martin B. Main at

For more information about the Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ program and to register for upcoming workshops, please view our calendar of events at

You can contact me at the UF/IFAS Extension Hillsborough County at 744-5519, ext. 54105. Hope you can get outside and garden. Be well.

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