How to Care for Tillandsia


Bromeliad Tillandsia is an air plant found native in Latin America. They are found growing on trees and rocks with no soil. The plants will bloom once in their lifetime followed by the production of pups. Pups are a plant shoot that can be removed to start a new plant. Blooming normally occurs sometime between mid-winter to mid-summer.

Tillandsia Plant Care

Step 1

Fertilize newly purchased Tillandsia plants by filling a mister bottle with water and a pinch of orchid fertilizer and lightly spray the entire plant. Continue to fertilize twice a month with a Bromeliad Tillandsia fertilizer that is 17-8-22. Use household plant fertilizer at ¼ strength if Bromeliad Tillandsia fertilizer is not available.

Step 2

Water Tillandsia plants every 10 days by submerging the plant in rain or bottled water for 12 hours. The plants will require watering more often in hot, dry environments. Gently shake the plants after submersion to remove pooled or standing water as this will cause rotting at the center root. Monitor the center root area to prevent it from becoming too wet or dry.

Step 3

Place Tillandsia plants under full spectrum fluorescent lighting for at least 12 hours a day. Set the plants no farther than 36 inches from the light source. Make sure the temperature is 50 to 90 degrees F for optimal growth.

Step 4

Dry the plants immediately following the submersion watering. Place the plants in an area with enough air circulation and light to promote drying in no more than 4 hours. Leaving the plants in wet conditions will cause rot.

Step 5

Remove Tillandsia plant pup growth once they reach a size of approximately 1/3 the main plant. Hold the plant and pup at the base and twist close the main plant base in a downward movement. The pups are new growth and will grow in the same manner as the mature plant.

Things You'll Need

  • Tillandsia plant
  • Water mister
  • Orchid fertilizer
  • Bromeliad Tillandsia fertilizer
  • Water
  • Fluorescent Lighting


  • How to Care for Your Tillandsia
  • Tillandsia Care Sheet
  • Tillandsia Airplant Care
Keywords: Tillandsia plant care, growing Tillandsia, airplant care

About this Author

Jennifer Loucks has over 10 years of experience as a former technical writer for a software development company in Wisconsin. Her writing experience includes creating software documentation and help documents for clients and staff along with training curriculum. Loucks holds a Bachelor of Science major from the University of Wisconsin - River Falls specializing in animal science and business.