Leaves 8-20 in an upright, tubular rosette, 20-60 cm long, broadly ligulate, usually green but often reddish-bronze and/or with red or white spots, scaly to hairless; margins small-toothed. Scape erect. Inflorescence usually compound. Flowers stalkless; sepals blue-green; petals green with blue tips; ovary green. An extremely variable species with several varieties and forms in cultivation.
var. amoena Leaves pale green
var. minor (Beer) L.B. Sm. Small, sepals red at the tip.
var. viridis L.B. Sm. Plain green petals, sepals green with a blue tip.
Related cultivars: ‘Doreen Johnston’ Medium to large. Tight tube, leaves green flushing pink, heavily blotched with cream. Inflorescence erect, reddish bracts, green petals.
‘Gem’ Small.Tight tube, dull green leaves, pendent inflorescence, bracts red, petals green tipped blue.
‘Red Raven’ Medium. Funnel-shaped, leaves red outside, mainly green inside. Semi-pendent inflorescence, rose-pink bracts, petals cream with violet tip.
Source: (2005). Bromeliaceae. In: . Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 5. Flowering plants. Monocotyledons. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.