Since they grow differently from the majority of other house plants, tillandsias can be challenging for beginners. They take significantly less care than other house plants because they are actually incredibly hardy. The instructions are summarised below, however you can scroll down for much more detailed information.
- They can get by with water misting and the occasional bath as long as the air is not too dry.
- Never plant in the ground.
- Give them filtered, bright light.
- Keep them from being frozen.
- It is necessary to immerse the plant in water for at least 2-3 hours every two weeks if you are growing them indoors where the air is dry.
- You can apply a soaking mist once or twice a week in the summer and once a month in the winter in a shaded or unheated home.
By sprinkling a little bromeliad or orchid fertiliser into your mister, you can fertilise. Here you may find our entire year’s worth of air plant fertiliser.
How to Water an Air Plant
The most challenging aspect of caring for air plants is watering them. Some individuals use misting religiously, others immerse their air plants, while yet others utilise a mix of misting and soaking.
In our experience, watering air plants is challenging because the plant’s requirements differ significantly depending on the environment. Additionally, some species need particular care. Assessing your environment is the first step in watering your air plant. How much light is reaching your plant? What’s the temperature like inside your house right now? Is there a lot of dry air there (is your plant close to a heater or fireplace)? Is it also really humid?
Following your responses, you can modify the air plant watering schedule to meet your specific requirements. Here is what we suggest as a place to start:
- Every one to two weeks, give your air plant a 5- to 10-minute soak in room-temperature tap water (or, if you can get it, rainwater or pond water).
- Once your plant has soaked, gently shake off any extra water. It should be placed on a towel upside down in a well-lit area. This is very crucial. If extra water is allowed to stand, air plants will quickly decay.
- The plant should be able to dry completely in 3 hours once the soaking process is finished. More time than this could cause your plant to decay. Try putting it somewhere brighter with better airflow to encourage quicker drying.
- Mist your plant well once a week (instead of watering it). Make sure the entire surface is saturated (but not so much that there is water dripping down into the plant).
- You need to water more when the air is hotter and dryer (summer, early fall). Your air plant will require less water during the cooler and more humid seasons (winter and spring). Just be mindful of your plant because heaters and fires dry out the air.
- Water everything in the morning. Evening sopping or sprinkling interferes with the plants’ ability to breathe at night and prolongs the drying process.
Is My Air Plant Getting Enough Water?
The tops of your air plant’s leaves may turn brown or crispy if you’ve been neglecting to water it. When an air plant is under-watered, its leaves’ inherent concavity tends to become more pronounced.
Unfortunately, it’s frequently too late to save an overwatered air plant. Your plant has certainly succumbed to rot if the base of the plant turns dark or black and leaves are falling out or off from the centre.
Regarding temperature, air plants are fairly tolerant. They thrive between 50 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. The ideal temperature difference between daytime and nighttime is roughly 10 degrees.
To maintain your air plant healthy, include orchid or specific air plant fertiliser in your watering routine once or twice a month. Simply sprinkle some in your water, then carry on as usual. Your air plant will blossom and propagate if you fertilise it (or pup — more on this later)
How are air plants maintained?
Here are 5 easy guidelines to remember when taking care of tillandsia:
- 1) Give your air plant regular waterings. Your air plant will require routine watering.
- 2) Supply light to your air plant.
- 3) Allow your air plant to breathe.
- 4) Maintain a Pleasant Temperature for Your Air Plant.
- 5) Don’t harm your airplant by doing this.
Is tillandsia simple to maintain?
More like pets than other plants, air plants are adorable. It doesn’t matter if a variety is fuzzy, furry, spiky, or trailing—it is impossible to resist. Usually very little, soilless air plants are simple to grow. As their name suggests, air plants use scales on their leaves to absorb nutrients and water from the atmosphere. Because they are simple to maintain and don’t require a lot of light to thrive, they are popular as indoor plants right now.
Do you soak air plants with their tops up?
It is best to provide air plants with water that is rich in minerals and nutrients because they obtain many of their nutrients directly from the water. The best water is rainwater, although spring water is a close second if you don’t have a convenient way to collect rainwater. Alternatively, you might utilise well, lake, or creek water. Never use filtered or distilled water. Less minerals and nutrients are present in distilled and filtered water. Many municipal water systems include fewer minerals and nutrients and more contaminants. If you are concerned about your pH level, air plants enjoy slightly acidic water. The ideal range for alkalinity is between 5.5 and 6.0. Most frequently, tap water from the city is higher than this range, making it unsuitable for air plants. Do not worry yourself too much about PH levels. Any good, pure water would do.
After watering your air plants, thoroughly drying them off is the second most crucial step. To ensure that your air plants completely dry, put them down on a dish towel on their side or upside down. For the larger species like Xerographica, Streptophylla, and Sparkler, this is especially crucial. Within two hours of their bath, they should be completely dry to the touch. Wait until your air plants are completely dry before putting them back in terrariums and vases. If you water your plants and then put them in an enclosure right away, your plant can get rot. Your air plants will be content and healthy if you follow these straightforward watering guidelines.
Does Tillandsia require sun exposure?
Tillandsia, also known as air plants, are botanical oddities that can be found in jungles, rain forests, or deserts, from sea level to high mountain regions. They are also becoming more and more popular in offices and homes due to their low maintenance requirements and intriguing shapes. Although these plants require little maintenance, that does not equate to no care at all. Tillandsia will flourish for you if you give them the light, water, and airflow they require!
The largest genus in the bromeliad family, which also includes pineapples, is called Tillandsia. and they’re all indigenous to the new globe. Air plants are valued for their overall structure, but they also regularly change colour throughout the year in response to biological cues and bloom. Air plants are unique in that they rely solely on food and water that can be absorbed via their leaves; tillandsia roots are only employed to attach themselves in place. This is in addition to the astounding variety of forms and colours that they come in. This qualifies them as epiphytes and makes them amenable to inventive mounting for breathtaking display.
While air plants can thrive in a variety of environments, they do require proper lighting. You should place your tillandsia in bright, indirect sunshine or under artificial lights (like from fluorescent bulbs). They can withstand a few hours in direct sun, but this is highly drying, so if they do, make sure to give them extra water. Although air plants may tolerate brief periods of darkness, such as when they are being transported or if they are momentarily placed in a dark corner, they do require excellent lighting to flourish to their full potential. Tillandsia can grow both inside and outside.
Tillandsia are frequently referred to as “air plants” since they can survive fully in their natural environments on the nutrients and moisture found in the air. Tillandsia are frequently discovered in trees, tucked away in a branch fork where moisture and mist gather to produce wet pockets. To capture as much moisture from the air as possible, each leaf has a texture. The plant’s many leaves subsequently direct water droplets to the plant’s base for usage. You will need to supply the water your air plants require unless you reside in a warm, humid rain jungle.
Plan to water your tillandsia using a combination of techniques. Tap water and well water are typically acceptable for air plants, while rainwater is preferred. Never use softened or distilled water. If you plan to water your plants using tap water, let the water sit in a basin on the counter for a few hours first. In this manner, the chlorine can evaportate before the air plants are added. Your air plants should be submerged in the water, and you should give them an hour to soak. After a bath, gently shake out the excess water from the plants, then hang them upside down to dry in a well-ventilated area, letting any retained moisture drip out and evaporate. Observe the plants four hours later. Return them to their display after they are completely dry. The plants must not stay damp for too long or they may decay.
In most places, weekly soakings will keep your tillandsia content. A couple of times per week, spritz your air plants to supplement (not to replace) the soaking. Mist more frequently and think about taking an extra bath once a week if you live in a particularly dry area or are experiencing extreme heat. Before taking a long, hot shower, you might also try bringing your air plants into the bathroom; they will enjoy the steamy humidity.
Pay close attention to how your air plants feel and appear both before and after their soaking. You’ll notice a change in how well-hydrated your plants are. The colour is clearer, and the leaves are more flexible and open. Despite being able to survive on much less water, air plants benefit greatly from proper watering in terms of growth, reproduction, and flowering. In essence, they will prosper.
In order to protect the delicate blossom, air plants in bloom should be cleaned under flowing water as opposed to submerged. As the air plants blossom, increase misting.
The ideal temperature range for your air plants is between 50 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
Although it is not technically necessary, fertilising your air plants does result in improved blooming, growing, and health. Additionally, well-fed air plants are more able to adapt to difficult circumstances, such as a two-week vacation without watering, a heat wave, etc. Once a month, apply a fertiliser made especially for bromeliads or air plants, or dilute Miracle-Grow or other water-soluble plant foods to 1/4 strength. Once a month, fill a spray bottle with the food water, add the fertiliser water, and thoroughly spritz.
A staggering variety of sizes and forms are produced when air plants grow. They are quite adaptable in terms of how they can be presented due to their low maintenance requirements and capacity to grow without being planted in soil. The only thing stopping you is your imagination! Air plants can be placed on driftwood, vine wreaths, coral, shells, stones, wood plaques, crystals, or fitted inside terrariums, glass globes, or miniature vases. I like to mount my air plants with florist wire so they are simple to take out for their water bath. However, if you want to glue your tillandsia in place, use something non-toxic and non-water soluble like E-6000 or Goop. Use a lower setting on your hot glue gun if you don’t want to burn the leaves.
Copper wire and pipes, particularly those that are frequently exposed to dampness, can be hazardous to air plants. Before utilising it with your air plants, be sure to completely cover it with a clear coating like Flex Clear if you simply adore the way copper looks, as I do.
Tillandsia air plants are an easy and fun way to enjoy plants in a variety of settings, bringing live decor into your home or office, whether you are an experienced gardener or are completely new to the idea. Are you planning to explore with air plants? I’m curious to know! Please take a moment to share which tillandsia is your favourite in the comments section!
How long does an air plant live?
Perennial plants are tillandsias, also referred to as air plants. According to the source, they have a lifespan of between two and five years, which indicates that they normally survive longer than two years.
The type of air plant and the growing conditions have an impact on how long they live, though. They reside in deserts, on various surfaces, and on tree branches in their natural habitat (other surfaces they can grow on).
Air plants only experience one flowering during their existence, which marks the culmination of their development and maturity.
Depending on the species, the flowers might remain in bloom for a number of months. However, the air plant will begin to die when the blossoms start to wilt and fade. Air plants develop pups or offsets before they die to carry on the same growth cycle.
Despite the mother plant dying, you can take the pups out and raise them separately. Separating the pups from the mother is referred to as “division is a method of air plant propagation.
As an alternative, you might leave those puppies grouped together ” (also known as “tillandsia balls).
What can I do to make my Tillandsia bloom?
Tillandsia plants (Tillandsia spp. ), which have colourful flower spikes and gray-green leaves, provide a house or yard an exotic feel. Since they are air plants, their roots require airflow to survive, and they also take in water from the atmosphere. Tillandsia plants are placed on tiled rooftops in numerous villages throughout Central America and allowed to naturally take root. Spanish moss (Tillandsia usneoides), which can survive in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8 through 11, is one of many tillandsias that can survive in Mediterranean conditions. Even though these wiry plants are vigorous growers that can handle some neglect, you might need to make some adjustments to their habitat to see their unusual blossoms, which come in hues like vivid pink, striking scarlet, and deep blue.
Put your tillandsia in a position with 50% shade, a north-facing window, or under a deciduous tree. Blooming is encouraged by diffused light. Move the tillandsia to a brighter location if you don’t see any flowers because inadequate light can prevent blossoming.
Throughout the summer growing season, water often to maintain a wet but never soggy soil. You can water as frequently as you’d like to maintain water blossoming to the flower spikes as long as the plant rapidly dries up during hot months.
During the growing season, mist your tillandsia every few days to enhance humidity, which is essential for healthy growth and flowering. Alternately, immerse the entire tillandsia for 10 minutes once a week in water that is room temperature. Additionally, this stops the plant from drying out, which can prevent it from blooming.
During the growing season, specifically from spring through early winter, mist your tillandsia once a month with diluted liquid fertiliser. Before applying, dilute the fertiliser to one-fourth strength because full strength fertiliser might burn the roots of tillandsia. Healthy blossoming depends on feeding your tillandsia during these blooming months.