A touch of the tropics by the swimming pool
This bromeliad is one that I've even seen used as an indoors in winter/outdoors in summer accent plant on the East Coast, but we are mild enough to grow this outdoors in the SF Bay Area year round. The more sun it gets, the more colored up the foliage gets, and when it finally blooms, which hopefully will take 6 to 8 years, and it will tower up to 6 feet tall with a bloom spike.(Like most bromeliads, it will die once it blooms, so I'm not in any hurry as this one doesn't usually pup). I love this plant, Alcantarea imperialis rubra from the Organ Mountains above Rio de Janeiro, and this one is already 4 feet across by 3 feet tall after just 3 years. I've got it planted amidst Alstroemeria 'Rachel', Justicia aurea and Justicia carnea behind it, and Tecomaria capensis aurea to the side, so it is surrounded by flower power from late spring into fall. Check out the other photos in the set for the rest of the scene around the pool, located on the island of Alameda, just 3 houses in from the bay's edge.
Here is a link that might be useful: Alcantarea imperialis rubra