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Plants of the UNF Campus

Neoregelia spectabilis - Fingernail airplant
Family Bromeliaceae



Over two thousand species of bromeliad are native to North and South America including several species in Florida. About seventy species of Neoregelia range are native to South America. Many hybrids are cultivated. Neoregelia species are fairly typical bromeliads, mostly living as epiphytes on other plants with their leaves arranged in tight rosettes. They differ in having their flowers in tight clusters held low in the rosette.


The common name refers to the red spot at the tip of each leaf in some of the species and hybrids. Leaves are vary from light green to solid red, often with markings on the leaves. Blue flowers are held low in the rosette and are not very conspicuous. After flowering, the rosette dies and is replaced by one or more small plants developing at its base or on short stolons. Although it is naturally an epiphyte, it grows well on the ground in a well-drained site.



See this plant in the Founders Plaza near the Gandhi statue.


Herbaceous plant about nine to twelve inches tall.

Care Instructions:

Light: part shade to shade

Water: well-drained soil, tolerates some drought

Soil: very adaptable provided the soil drains well


Several types of Neoregelia and its hybrids are at or near their northern limits in Jacksonville. In the northern part of the city, it may be best to plant them in a protected site. In general, grow them in a shady spot with good drainage.


Neoregelia spectabilis