All About Air Plants

Learning a few care tips for your Tillandsia will help them stay beautiful and alive so that they can add tons of charm and curiosity to your home.

 

Air plants, also known as Tillandsia, are quirky, low-maintenance, and so much fun to have in your home. While we often think that air plants need nothing at all to survive, that’s not entirely true! Learning a few care tips for your Tillandsia will help them stay beautiful and alive so that they can add tons of charm and curiosity to your home.

 

-varieties of air plants wallaces garden center

Tillandsia 101: Why We Love Air Plants

Air plants are native to South America, Mexico and the Caribbean regions. While in the wild, they climb up and cling to plants, trees and telephone poles. Air plants don’t need soil or much care; they just absorb moisture and the nutrients they need from dew, rain, insect matter, and any decaying plants nearby. 

You’ll know a Tillandsia when you see one because of their alien-like, pointy, twisty foliage. There is a great variety in their appearance; some are flexible, some are stiff, some are thin, some are thick. Air plants can even produce beautiful, bright flowers and reproduce by creating offshoots called pups. You can separate these babies and create new plants, too! 

 

Air plants don’t need soil or much care; they absorb moisture and the nutrients they need from dew, rain, insect matter, and any decaying plants nearby.

How to Take Care of a Tillandsia Plant

There’s a bit of a misnomer that air plants need absolutely nothing to grow. While their needs are few, they still need some love! Just like any other plant, Tillandsia need water and sunlight. The cool thing about air plants is that they don’t need soil. You can place Tillandsias in some interesting locations as long as they get some sunlight and you can access them to water regularly.

 

-misting an air plant wallaces garden center

How to Water Air Plants

Watering a Tillandsia can be interesting since they don’t sit in a pot of soil. You can try watering your air plants using a few different methods:

  • Mist them! Fill a spray bottle with water and give your air plants a little shower.
  • Fill a cup with water and soak the air plant for 10-20 minutes.
  • Take your Tillandsia and hold it under the tap for one minute, using room temperature water.

Aim to water them 1-3 times a week to keep them happy. If you’re becoming an air plant collector, you can save time by filling your bathtub or large bowl with water and dropping your air plants all in at once. They can soak up as much water as they need. When you remove them, gently shake the plants to ensure they don’t have large water droplets sitting on their leaves. You want to place them somewhere that has good air circulation so they can dry out a bit. 

How Much Sunlight Do Air Plants Need? 

Air plants love some bright, indirect light. They can handle a few hours of direct sun each day, but you don’t want them to have too much. Intense light can dehydrate or even burn air plants. While you can bring your air plants outside during the warm months, be aware of temperatures that drop below 50°F or climb above 90°F.  

 

Wallace's Garden Center-All About Air Plants -decorating with air plants indoors

Decorating with Air Plants

Add some visual impact to your interior with air plants! They are great décor for any season but can be particularly fun when used in holiday décor. During any time of the year, you can put air plants pretty much anywhere sunny as long as there’s no chill coming from the outdoors. Here are some ways we have used air plants in our homes:

  • In a glass container alongside crystals and seashells.
  • Displayed in a macramé hanger.
  • Placed on a wooden log display as a centerpiece. 
  • Spaced out on a wall as a minimalist, living, breathing art installation.

 

Air plants are an excellent addition to your collection, no matter where you place them. They are fun and a bit of Zen to your home. If you’re ready to scoop some of these up, check out our air plants for sale in Bettendorf. We’d love to see which variety of Tillandsia steals your heart!

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