How To Grow Air Plants

How To Grow Air Plants


Air plants on a piece of drift wood

If you're looking for a super easy to care for plant for your home then an air plant is perfect! These hardy little plants will thrive despite neglect. All they need is a bit of air and some moisture, simple!

What is an air plant?

Air plant on a piece of woodIt's a tropical American plant that usually grows on trees, with long, narrow specialised leaves that absorb water and nutrients from the atmosphere. An air plant's roots are used purely for attaching themselves to trees, rocks, shrubs and the ground.

Fact: Air plants are Bromeliads.

Many air plants grow with strap-shape or slender triangle-shape leaves, and most have attractive tubular or funnel-shape flowers.


Although they're easy to care for, a few rules should be followed when growing air plants:

  • Good air circulation - very important for a healthy plant.
  • Daily misting - from late spring to mid-autumn. In winter mist once or twice a week.
  • Fertilise weakly - mixed at only one-quarter strength, on a monthly basis through out spring and summer.
  • Protect from full sun - as most grow on trees in dappled shade.
  • Don't let it sit somewhere lower than 8oC it will die, if you live in a warm climate they can be grown outside all year round.

Air plant in a potPlacement

Air plants look great alone as architectural elements, in air plant terrariums, mounted on drift wood and sea shells or even in a pot of stones. Because they are naturally suited to growing on trees, they can be lashed against a tree or post in your garden using fishing line. Some species make great companions on orchids as they like the same conditions. Hanging air plants are very popular in modern design at the moment.

With more than 650 types of air plant (Tillandsia spp.) that can grow - and thrive - without soil there is one to suit your home or garden.

If you have an air plant please do share a photo with us on our Facebook page.

Happy Growing!


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