This large terrestrial bromeliad is native to the mountains in Chile. It is usually found on dry rocky slopes at altitudes of up to 2,000m. It is one of the most cold hardy of all bromeliads.
Puya are the largest of all the bromeliads. The rosette of long, arching and spiny lance shaped leaves can be up to 3m in diameter and 2m in height.
During early summer the plant produces a tall, up to 5m, flower spike with large terminal panicle of the most amazing blue-green shimmery funnel shaped flowers with brightly contrasting orange anthers.
This is a relatively rare Bromeliad but one that can be grown in the right conditions here in Australia. The spectacular plant featured in the photos here was seen at Mount Tomah Botanic Gardens in the Blue Mountains of NSW.