top of page

Introduction of Bromeliads into Australia

There are no records of the early introduction of bromeliads into Australia. Some have been grown here for a long time such as Billbergia nutans (commonly known as 'Queen’s Tears') and Billbergia pyramidalis concolor. Australian botanic gardens have had collections including Aechmea miniata var. discolor, Aechmea fasciata, Billbergia vittata, Billbergia zebrina, Aechmea weilbachii, Tillandsia lindenii and Nidularium innocentii.

Major collectors of note have been Charles Hodgson of Melbourne who began collecting in the 1930s, Charles Webb of Sydney who began collecting after WW2 and Bill Morris of Warners Bay, NSW who collected in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

In 1963, a group of about 35 people formed an Australian Society and the numbers since then have rapidly increased. From this time on, numerous people have imported bromeliads, plus local hybridists have added to the variety available and the number of bromeliads grown in Australia has rapidly increased.

Hybridisation in Australia

The foremost hybridiser in terms of quantity and quality in Australia has been Grace Goode (OAM) of Queensland. Starting around 1970, she has made around 600 crosses, mainly in Neoregelia, Cryptanthus and Billbergia.

Since the 1950s, Bill Morris had been developing and growing hybrids (Billbergias and Mini Neoregelias)

Two other hybridists worthy of particular mention are .

Other Australian hybridists of note include Clyde Wasley, Olwen Ferris, Margaret Paterson, Bob Larnach, John Buchanan and Jack Koning.

Continue exploring

bottom of page