About Pink Quill
Table of Contents
Pink quill is a robust and easy plant to take care of. The versatile plant, which goes by the scientific name Tillandsia cyanea, is part of the Bromeliad family.
The pink quill is recognized by its characteristic large pink bracts. The showy display of flowers resembles ink quills, which inspires the plant name. Pink quills are commonly sold bromeliads that are also known as fan flower and blue flowered torch.
Pink Quill’s Main Characteristics
The bracts are long-lasting, allowing plant owners to enjoy their beautiful colors and display for several months. Besides the pink quills, the plant also displays small violet flowers that last for a couple of days in summer.
The pink quill plants mature in a couple of years as the bracts start turning from pink to green. The flowers eventually die off, marking the completion of the plant life cycle.
It is better to appreciate the beautiful pink bracts while they last, which is why many plant owners like to propagate the pink quill from its offsets to ensure that the blooms appear on several plants.
Origins and Resemblance to Tillandsia Lindennii
Tillandsia cyanea grow as epiphytes, or air plants, in their native rainforest environment. A tropical environment is a suitable growing medium for these perennial plants.
Many plant owners like to grow their pink quills in pots rather than securing them to wires or wood. The plant matures and grows up to 10 feet tall when given suitable growing conditions.
Tillandsia lindennii is another flowering species belonging to the Bromeliad family. The pink quill plant resembles Tillandsia lindennii, but the only difference in their appearance is that Tillandsia lindennii are a bit larger in size and showcase a taller flowering stalk.
Pink Quill Plant Care
In their native habitat, pink quills do not need soil for their growing requirements. The air plants grow on a mother plant but rely on the air, rain and compost on tree branches for their essential nutrients.
These plants are easy to care for and grow indoors, provided you care for the adequate lighting, watering, feeding and nutrient requirements of the plant.
The impressive display of pink and purple flowers depends on a balanced watering and light supply.
The pink quill thrives in bright natural light. The succulent is kept in partial shade, where it grows beautiful and long-lasting pink bracts.
The pink quill requires watering once a week with purified or distilled water. You can fertilize the plants once or twice a year, which is specifically made for air plants or epiphytes.
In their natural cycle, epiphytes are found at elevations on treetops, where they are exposed to plenty of sunlight and partial shade under other trees.
Best Soil Mix for Pink Quill
Even though pink quill is an epiphyte, they are interestingly grown as container plants as well. The air plants have a fragile rooting system, which means you can easily keep them in a small pot.
When grown as indoor plants, pink quill requires well-draining soil. To provide such characteristics to the soil of a pink quill, you can add orchid mix or orchid bark to the potted plants.
Additionally, peat moss and sphagnum moss provide a spongy and fibrous medium for the plant roots. Such a growing medium is ideal for bromeliad family species and allows the pink quill plant to tolerate frequent watering.
Alternatively, you can use a mixture of coco coir and orchid bark as a suitable growing medium for the pink quills.
The pink quill can produce multiple offsets, which is why you must allow them enough space to extend their roots so that they are well-suited to produce other air plants from the mother plant.
Watering Pink Quill
Pink quills require frequent watering as compared to other Tillandsia genus in the bromeliad family.
The dryness of the soil and weather conditions determine whether your plant needs watering every couple of weeks and months.
A light misting or spraying of your pink quill once or twice a week is enough to sustain the plant in accordance with the humidity and light conditions. However, many people prefer deep watering their pink quill plants.
Taper your watering frequency once colder months arrive. In summer, you can thoroughly water your pink quill’s plant soil after every month.
Excessively watering the soil, moist environment, and soggy roots can lead to the development of problems for the pink quill. Ensure that you lightly spray the plant every week during warm climates and allow the potting medium to dry and excessive runoff water before watering it again.
Under watering is more suitable for the plant than overwatering. The pink quill doesn’t need a lot of water for its optimum growth and development.
Light and Location
It is best to position your pink quill in a sunny spot where it can receive adequate sunlight that will prolong the flowering period of the plant.
Exposing the plant to the bright light coming from an east or west exposure fits its growing requirements and keeps the plant happy.
It is essential to note that strong and direct sunlight can scorch and burn the quill plant leaves. Too much exposure to the afternoon sun can burn the new foliage on the plant and wouldn’t allow it to bloom properly.
The pink quill is sensitive to chlorine present in water. This chlorine present in tap water can induce harmful effects in your quill plant, as it kills the good bacteria in the soil and injures plant roots.
Rainwater, filtered, purified, or distilled water, has ideal qualities that do not harm or damage your plant.
Most tap water contains chlorine, which can damage your plant in the long run. Try leaving the water overnight until excessive chlorine evaporates, and then you can use that water to feed your pink quill.
Pink quill is a tropical plant which desires warmer climates. Quill plants are not fond of dry air conditions and prefer good air circulation.
These plants thrive indoors as normal room temperatures suit their temperature needs. It is ideal for maintaining the surrounding temperatures of these plants, around 75°F to 80°F.
Keep the plant away from locations where it is exposed to fluctuations in temperature and humidity, such as near fireplaces, heating or air-conditioning vents.
The incongruous temperature range from extreme hot to extreme cold can pose extreme stress to the plant.
Potting and Repotting
Many people love to bind these air plants to branches of other plants and blocks of wood.
Pink quill needs a small pot to grow as these plants have a small root system. Sometimes these epiphytic plants don’t even need soil for their growth and can take up required water when you mist its leaves.
If you are keeping your pink quills as potted plants, then ensure that you are using a specifically made potting mix for the bromeliad family.
It is recommended to repot the quill plant during early spring. If you are repotting your pink quill, then take a new pot a size bigger than the previous pot, and fill it with suitable compost, ensuring that the pot has sound drainage and porous soil.
Fertilizing Pink Quill
Fertilizer sprays are a suitable option for these epiphytes, which tend to absorb their nutrients and water from the root system and leaves.
Many plant owners recommend feeding your pink quill once in summer and once in spring. However, these plants are not heavy feeders.
Pink quills are susceptible to the common sap-sucking aphids. Washing them off and tackling these insects is fairly easy with the help of insecticidal soaps or neem oil.