I recently got two bromeliads (guzmania, I think?). They're blooming now, but I'm hopefully several months away from having any pups. I was reading up on it anyway, though, and saw that there are two ways to deal with pups: Cut them away from the mother plant and grow them separately, or let them grow as a cluster on the mother plant. I see a lot of instructions for the first option, but if I would rather have a cluster, how do I do that? Do I have to cut away the old leaves or anything? from Anonymous
If you would rather have a cluster of plants, all you have to do is leave the pups attached to the mother plant.
The mother plant can still live on for 1 to 3 years or more before it dies. In that time the outer leaves of the mother plant will likely yellow and wither until eventually the mother plant is all brown and you just have the pups growing.
You only have to cut away the old leaves once they are dead and brown, because the mother plant is still providing energy to the pups!