Guzmania is a popular genus of bromeliad. Their colorful flower bracts can be found in shopping malls, conservatories and many other plantscapes as well as kitchen tables and office desks. While they are a popular in public indoor spaces they grow naturally from Florida to Brazil and are particularly common in Costa Rica and Columbia. Its common name is the scarlet star. The scarlet star has long, flat, glossy green leaves with smooth margins. The leaves come together to form a star shape in the middle. What is commonly mistaken as the flower on the plant is actually a grouping of modified leaves, called bracts.
Guzmania plants are perennial plants in the bromeliad family. There are over 120 different guzmania plants and all are native to South America. These tropical beauties are known as epiphytic plants and attach to trees with roots that never reach the soil. Striking bracts grow from the center of the plant and can be red, yellow, orange or deep purple depending on the species. Leaves are thin and dark green. They cause no injury to their host plant but just use them for support. The leaves collect rainwater and the plant receives nourishment in its natural environment from decomposing leaves and droppings from monkeys and birds.