Beneath the oaks lies the perfect environment for growing bromeliads. These areas have been left to self-mulch after the annual leaf-fall. Here in central Florida the leaves fall not in the fall season but in spring. The new leaves emerging along the branches push the old leaves off and the ground is showered with oak leaves.
Many new varieties of bromeliad have been placed around My Garden Path during the past few years. Some have bloom spikes but others bloom deep in the cup of the leaves and only the leaves show color.
The dappled sunlight shining on and through the brom leaves shows off the color to best advantage. Sometimes just the tips of the leaves have color, looking like painted fingernails.
Other species have in your face color right in the middle of the plant surrounding those hidden flowers deep in the cup.
Most of the bromeliads around the path have been passed along to me from other gardening friends. Some came from my mother's garden.
Being gifts from family and friends make these beauties even more special to me. A few have been purchased but very few. Most are pass-along plants. The most prolific multipliers have already been passed along by me to others. Sharing plants is a great way to spread the love of gardening.
All of the bromeliads in my garden made it through the winter freezes quite well. A few had some damaged outer leaves but most were unaffected. These plants would look lovely growing along some of the lower branches of the oaks. (That's an idea dancing through my mind.)