Queen’s tears plant, also known as Friendship Plant, gets its name from its inclination to weep nectar drops and its willingness to generate offsets. It is non-intrusive and has no negative impact on the environment. Originating from Brazil, Queen’s tears prefer to grow in the regions of Paraguay, Uruguay, and Argentina.
Friendship Plant Main Characteristics
|Common Name||Queen’s tears, Friendship Plant, Angel’s Tears|
|Botanical name||Billbergia nutans|
|Synonyms||Billbergia linearifolia Baker, Billbergia minuta Mez, Billbergia schimperiana Wittm. ex Baker|
|Native Range||Brazil to North Argentina|
|Common Cultivars||Windii, Lissom, Theodore L. Mead|
|USDA Hardiness Zones||9,10,11|
|Mature Size||16 inch tall;30 inch wide|
|Bloom Time||Spring (After 2-3 Years)|
|Propagation methods||by seeds, by removing offsets|
|Soil||Bromeliad mix or orchid potting soil|
- Friendship Plant Main Characteristics
- Friendship Plant Care
- Types (Cultivars) of Friendship Plant
- Propagating Friendship Plant
- Potting and Repotting Friendship Plant
- Common Pests
- Common Problems
- What Do Friendship Plants Need? A Guide to Caring for Your Friendship Plant (Video)
Friendship Plant Care
The Queen’s Tears plant is a beautiful and easy-to-care-for plant that can be grown indoors or out. It prefers warmer climates but will also tolerate cooler conditions if necessary. As long as you take proper care, it doesn’t mind if you live somewhere with hotter summers and colder winters! The soil preference is somewhat flexible, though an orchid or bromeliad soil mixture work best.
Light and Location
The Queen’s tears grow best in the shade with bright but indirect sunlight. However, you can also easily keep this plant indoors if you have an area that gets plenty of light, such as a north-facing window where it will receive at least 4 hours on either side each day (though try giving them some sun).
Queen’s tears plants are fairly drought tolerant. They don’t require frequent watering throughout the winter, spring and fall. However, during the summer months they will need more water to stay healthy and blooming.
Friendship plant needs moderate watering; overwatering can cause the roots to rot. Water the plant when the top inch of soil is dry to the touch. You can water your plant by pouring water into the pot until it reaches the soil and then allowing excess water to drain out the bottom, or by placing it in a sink with 1/2 an inch of water and letting it sit for 15 minutes.
Friendship Plant is native to South America, meaning that it is tolerant of warmer temperatures than other plants might be comfortable with. However, it does not grow well in frost or freezing weather because it doesn’t do well with cold temperatures, so keep the plant indoors at those times. The optimum range is (60–80°F).
Maintaining The Friendship plant needs high humidity levels to thrive. If the humidity level falls below 50%, the leaves will start to turn brown and the plant will eventually die. You can increase humidity levels around your Friendship plant by placing it in a room with a humidifier, placing it near a water source, or spraying the leaves with water periodically.
They do not require fertilization as often as other plants might. Fertilize after half a month during the spring and summer and monthly in winter. Keep the fertilizer at half strength.
They also do not require much pruning, but you can if needed. Prune sparingly and only if the plant is outgrowing its pot or needs shaping.
Types (Cultivars) of Friendship Plant
Cultivars of the Queen’s Tears plant are numerous, as this is an easy plant to hybridize. Some of the more famous examples are listed here.
- Theodore L. Mead
Propagating Friendship Plant
Propagating a friendship plant is easy. When the plant has produced several offshoots at its base, simply remove one of the new plants and replant it in fresh soil. Be sure to water the new plant regularly. Friendship plants will thrive when given bright, indirect sunlight.
These new growths are known as “pups,” and you should not remove them until they reach around 25% of the size of the parent plant. Surviving an early repotting is a tall task for most pups.
Potting and Repotting Friendship Plant
Friendship Plants do not require frequent repotting but repot in early spring if the plant is running out of room in its container. Just be sure to use a pot with drainage holes, so the soil doesn’t get waterlogged. Use a Bromeliad or orchid mix container as the base for the best results. Repot every year if the plant hasn’t yet bloomed.
These plants are entirely non-toxic and safe to be around.
They are susceptible to a few common plant pests, including scale insects and mealybugs. These can be wiped away with a damp cloth, or they can be treated by using insecticidal soap or a neem oil solution as a safe and effective pesticide.
Are leaf tips turning Yellow?
Repot your plant in a bigger pot (in spring); it has outgrown the one it’s currently in right now.
Brown leaf tips?
Raise the humidity level and use distilled water when watering.
Unidentified Moisture on the flowers?
These are the tears mentioned in ‘Queen’s Tears.’ Nothing to worry about at all.
How old is your plant? If it is younger than three years, it is supposed to be this way. Try moving it to a warmer spot with more indirect sunlight if it is older.
What Do Friendship Plants Need? A Guide to Caring for Your Friendship Plant (Video)
How to divide Billbergia nutans?
During spring, remove offsets from the base of the mother plant with a sharp knife and plant them in a new pot, provided they are above a quarter of the parent’s height.
What is a Friendship plant?
Queen’s Tears plant is also called Friendship plant because of its frequent offsets at the root base; the primary way to propagate for this houseplant. A perfect gift to a fellow gardener.