Tillandsia - Tillandsia argentea


Tillandsia is an epiphytic plant, very present in our country but little known because it is considered by too many as a weed or as a bad and pestiferous plant; why these last negative reviews? Well, everything derives from the fact that Tillandsia is, as we have already said, an epiphytic plant, that is, capable of growing simply resting on other plants or even on inert material. The secret lies in the fact that the Tillandsia does not have roots, and therefore does not use or extract nutrients from the soil or from other plants to keep itself alive (therefore it is wrong to judge it as a pestifer); it has structures called trichomes on the surface of its leaves, that is lint that captures the humidity of the air and extracts the nutrients for the sustenance of the plant itself. For those who know the Tillandsia, they know that it can reach several meters in size (we cannot speak of height or length because this depends on whether the plant is hanging from some branch of a high tree, to a wall or if it is resting on the ground) and that the growth and multiplication of trichomes make it particularly scenic and decorative. You will certainly have seen some strange plants growing clinging to light poles, antennas, pylons, electric and telephone cables and everything that is unusual to see as the basis for a plant; well, those plants in most cases belong to the genus of Tillandsia, which is made up of about 500 different species that are also very different from each other both in appearance and in the places they prefer popular. The family to which it belongs is that of the Bromeliaceae, which is the same as the pineapple, and in fact the arrangement of the leaves in a rosette and their turgid and erect structure recalls the leaves closest to the pineapple fruit. The origin of this plant is to be found in the areas of Central America, but these characteristics of life have allowed it to populate all known climates (except deserts), reaching the cold of Canada or the heat of Sicily. They also have flowers and fruits, quite rare to see because the plant must be mature and the climatic conditions are particularly suitable.

Environment and exposure

The environment of Tillandsia is a temperate environment, without sudden changes, humid but not stagnant and above all not directly exposed to the sun. As far as temperatures are concerned, we can say that the maximum level at which the plant is kept alive is very high, even higher than 30 degrees centigrade (as long as, remember, it is in any case with high percentages of air humidity), therefore not there are many problems; what instead needs particular attention is the minimum temperature, which must never drop below 10 degrees centigrade, under penalty of very rapid death of the whole plant. For this reason, in winter it is good to avoid keeping the plant outside, unless you live in a climatic paradise where the lowest winter temperature only reaches 10 degrees centigrade for a short time; in this case the Tillandsia will live very well outdoors and you will see it grow and live on every surface. The specification of air humidity is to be taken into particular consideration because it seems clear to us that an epiphytic plant that absorbs nutrients by channeling free water into the air through the trichomes must be in a place where there is a lot of free water. in the air, and this is unequivocally synonymous with very high relative and absolute humidity. For exposure we can assure you that Tillandsia does not like direct sunlight, even if the climate has a relative humidity of one hundred percent; in fact, they tend to dry the leaves quickly, which therefore prevents the absorption of nutrients through the trichomes and leads to death. Therefore the ideal place for the Tillandsia that we like to suggest to you is under the canopy of a large tree, which with its leaves will keep the plant cool and in dim light and at the same time will provide it with a safe support and a good dose of humidity in every period of the 'year. To avoid stagnation in contact with every part of the plant, therefore it is better to position it at the top (in fact, the top of the trunk of a tree is almost perfect) away from even small stagnations and marshes.


For the Tillandsia, which is an epiphytic plant, it is absolutely impossible to speak of soil as it is devoid of roots and above all it takes its nutrients from the air and humidity that characterizes it. More than anything else, it seems sensible to talk about the most suitable location, and here it is clear that the reference goes to what has already been said previously. Bright place but not directly exposed to sunlight, ventilated and possibly open, warm (in winter above 10 degrees centigrade), humid, protected from stagnation; an example, valid as advice: a wall near a tree with a large crown or directly the trunk of a tree with similar characteristics.

Planting and repotting

The planting of Tillandsia is a very important operation, because this plant is very simple to grow (it does not have many requests and is quite autonomous as it is epiphytic) but needs some precise indications. For example, planting in our apartment is necessary when in winter the temperature drops continuously and abundantly below 10 degrees centigrade, because we have seen how cold is a natural enemy for this plant of tropical origin. For the rest, the only precaution to take in every part of the year is to avoid direct exposure and a dwelling precisely congenial to tillandsia it is, and we repeat, the crown of a large tree such as an oak or an olive tree. On the other hand, just as it made no sense to speak of soil as Tillandsia is an epiphytic plant and does not take any nourishment from the earth as it has no roots, it also makes no sense to speak of repotting; at most, if we really want to touch the subject, we can say that moving the place where the plant is located is important to respect the humidity and above all the temperatures desired by this plant specimen.


Watering for Tillandsia is an operation that is necessary only in the event that the climate is particularly dry and that we are unable to guarantee humidity to our plant even with very frequent sprays of rain or distilled water with a vaporizer (i.e. free of calcium and limestone, very harmful for Tillandsia). In this case, then we can operate like most Bromeliaceae, ie by pouring water into the natural hollow of the rosette attachment of the leaves, which will provide water and moisture to the plant. But be careful not to overdo it because then you risk bringing the specimen to rot (remember that it hates water stagnation). In any case, to avoid going beyond measure with these waterings, we must remember that given the characteristics and the origin of this plant it is good to have a little dryness rather than too much water, always excluding the humidity of the air which must always be very pronounced (steaming is highly recommended).


Nature is extraordinary, and it so happens that the Tillandsia needs as little watering as it needs to be fertilized. This is due to the fact that by drawing water and nutrients from atmospheric humidity, the latter are not in abundance because it is certainly not comparable to how much the soil is able to give to non-epiphytic plants. Therefore, there is a need to dilute generic liquid fertilizer in the vaporization water and spray it twice a month in summer and once a month in winter. The quantity to be diluted must be halved compared to what the product leaflet suggests, and above all you must avoid depositing this mixture in the well of the rosette of leaves because these two components could lead the plant to burn due to too many nutrients. We specify that the fertilizer must be balanced and balanced, but above all we must be careful that nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus predominate, which are very important for Tillandsia.


The reproduction of Tillandsia is very very simple, because it operates through the division from the mother plant of the children that are born at its base and that as soon as they form small roots can be detached and placed on a place similar to that described and treated by adult specimens. They will make their gradual growth, as long as there are suitable conditions such as humidity and penumbra. Multiplication by seed is very difficult because it would really take a perfectly recreated climate to allow a seed to develop.


The Tillandsia, being a Bromeliaceae, has bracts which are those colored components that act as a hen for the real flower, consisting of a very visible and turgid structure with scales that rises from the central rosette. The real flower unfortunately lasts only a few days, while the bracts anticipate it and exceed it by a lot, even coming to show themselves for several months. The flowering period varies from species to species, but in general it goes from June to October at the most, so it includes summer and early autumn, after which the cold (although we remember that the temperature must not drop below 10 degrees centigrade) prevents the plant from using the forces to give life to the flower. In the case of Tillandsia, the rosette of leaves that saw the flower born will die shortly after the flower itself has withered, so when you begin to see the leaves dry it is good to separate any children present.

Diseases and parasites

Lice, scale insects and physiopathies of the leaves linked above all to low environmental humidity and / or too cold.

Latin name: Tillandsia baileyi

Family: Bromeliads
Origin: Texas, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua

Flowering time:

Flower color: pink bracts pigot, purple flowers

Plant type:
decorative curiosity

Type of vegetation: perennial

Type of foliage:

from 12 to 30cm

Flowering Tillandsia

The flowering period varies depending on the species, but generally the plants belonging to the Tillandsia genus bloom in late summer and early autumn. A flowering that in any case (for each species) is decidedly spectacular and offers truly enchanting color effects. The bright colors of the flowers stand out well among the thin elongated leaves with more subtle colors. Some species emanate a pleasant perfume, like theTillandsia usneoides.

A tip: at the end of flowering remove the stem, so as to lighten the plant.

Argentea Tillandsia

The Tillandsia or air plant Argentea, when it gets its adult form can grow to about 12 centimeters in diameter approximately.

Aeranthos Tillandsia

Albida Tillandsia

Baileyi Tillandsia

Bergeri Tillandsia

The base of the plant has bulb-shaped leaves are very thin and fibrous leaves inflorescence way become silvery blue with a green touch, has very few flowers, these are of a very peculiar color as cherries a particularly beautiful color, the variety of plants air Argentea usually grows alone or in small colonies of a few individuals.

This variety of plant tillandsia air or comes from Cuba and Jamaica. It is very similar to the fuchsii Tillandsia. Tillandsia argentea varies especially in terms of the color of the flower parts and leaves, curved edges about themselves. Very elegant suspended.

This variety of plant tillandsia air or comes from Cuba and Jamaica. It is very similar to the fuchsii Tillandsia. Tillandsia argentea varies especially in terms of the color of the flower parts and leaves, curved edges about themselves. Very elegant suspended. "," description_short ":"

The Tillandsia or air plant Argentea, when it gets its adult form can grow to about 12 centimeters in diameter approximately. "," available_now ":" Available "," available_later ":" Available "," id ": 228," id_product ": 228," out_of_stock ": 2," new ": 0," id_product_attribute ": 566," quantity_wanted ": 1," extraContent ": [<" title ":" Reviews (0) "," content ":" n


Air plant aficionado Marissa Pretorius of Opus Studio shares the low-down on how to care for these fascinating plants:

1. They will still need watering: hang them in the shower for no-effort care or give a healthy misting with a spray bottle every second day.

2. Air plants will benefit from being dunked in room temperature tap water for about 30 minutes every third week. Once they've had a good soak, let them dry in a high-light environment.

3. Placing air plants in a vessel with a small amount of water will allow them to produce their own moisture (the "self-watering" terrarium effect). Make sure your chosen container is not sealed as they need circulating air to survive.

4. If your air plant looks too gray and dry, a light misting will restore its green hue.

5. Air plants prefer bright, filtered light. Basically, the more indirect but bright light the more they will thrive.

6. If your air plant is looking poorly and dry, give it an overnight soak. Shake it off properly so it doesn't retain too much water as this can cause rot.


Previous Article

Cambria - Orchids - Cultivation techniques and main species of the Cambria Orchid

Next Article

Vitamin A Veggies: Learn About Vegetables High In Vitamin A