Intriguing Air Plants

By Kerry Ann Mendez

Tillandsias, commonly known as air plants, must be one of the easiest houseplants to grow. No need to come up with excuses on why you "killed" a plant with this survivalist. The biggest no-no is overwatering - no real risk for those of us who are forgetful.

Air plants will live for several years. They thrive in bright, filtered light where temperatures are between 50 and 90 degrees. To hydrate air plants, either submerge them in water for 20 to 30 minutes or mist them, one to three times a week, depending on air temperature and humidity.

These fascinating plants will also flower when happy. Striking flowers can be pink, brilliant red, purple or yellow, depending on the species. Sadly, air plants only bloom once in their lifetime BUT they produce babies, called "pups", that will carry on the floral show. To encourage flowering, fertilize them once a week with Air Plant Food or an orchid fertilizer (we sell both).

Prices range from $3.99 to $40. We are also holding a Living Ornament Workshop on Saturday, November 30th, 2019 where participants will create a gorgeous glass ornament featuring an air plant.

We look forward to introducing you to these high-impact, low-maintenance plants.

About the Author

KERRY ANN MENDEZ is an award-winning garden educator, author and design consultant based in southern Maine. Her latest book is The Budget-Wise Gardener. You'll now find her at Estabrook's consulting on garden design, answering your gardening questions and much more. Plus, check out her Garden Webinar series for more tips and tricks.

Kerry Ann Mendez