Air Plants, also known as Tillandsia, are one of the easiest plants to grow. They do not require soil to grow in, as air plants are epiphytes, meaning they grow on another tree or object. Nonetheless, air plants don’t steal nutrients from their host, and only use it as a home to grow. Tiny vessels located on the leaves of airplants help them capture moisture and nutrients from the air. While they are easy to grow, they still need some attention to survive. Here are some tips on how to care for air plants.
Watering Air Plants
You have to mist air plants once a week, however, misting should not be used as a sole source of moisture. You should also soak your airplants at least once a month: fill up a bowl with water and submerge for about 20 to 30 minutes. If your plant is flowering, do not submerge the flower. Afterwards, shake any excess water off. If you keep your airplants in a terrarium, it is recommended to let the air plants dry (for about 3-4 hours) before placing it back in the terrarium, as sitting water can cause rot and damage the airvplant.
If you keep your air plants indoors, in a dry and warm apartment, you might have to water them more often (e.g. misting twice a week instead).
Air and Light
Airplants love bright light. Though, a good amount of sunlight is necessary, be careful placing them under direct sun light, as it might burn the plant.
Good air circulation is also important for airplants. Therefore, open terrariums are recommended.
The most favourible temperature for airplants ranges from 10 to 35 Degrees Celsius.
Fertilizing and Trimming
Fertilizing air plants is not necessary for survival, however it will definitely increase the growth of your plant. You may use orchid fertilizer once a month, diluted to 1/4 strength.
As air plants grow new leaves the old ones will become brown and die. You can cut those leaves off with scissors.
Air plants usually bloom once during their lifetime. The flowers are often striking colors, and the bloom period can last from several days to month. Around bloom time, they’ll produce offshoots called “pups”. You will notice a separate and distinct center of their own. Once the offshoot reaches one-third the size of the parent plant, you can remove the pup gently by pulling apart.
Displaying Air Plants
Since air plants are very unique and do not require soil to grow, they can be placed almost anywhere. You can place them in small faceted pots or glass terrariums. Air plants can also be easily mounted on a driftwood using glue.
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