Tillandsia (Tillandsia) is an exotic flower with an original appearance, belonging to the Bromeliad family.
The homeland of the plant is America. Wild Tillandsia lives in the tropics, it can be found in Chile and Mexico. In Russia, the flower is grown exclusively in indoor conditions. It adapts well to changing climates, therefore it grows in different latitudes.
Its leaves are green or silvery. Tillandsia inflorescences drive out spikelets that look like spikelets. Over time, they turn into flowers.
There are other varieties, for example, Tillandsia usneiform, silvery.
Along with other members of the Tillandsia family, it requires competent care. In this case, she will delight with good flowering.
Lighting. Since the plant is native to the tropics, it requires diffused lighting. The tropical sissy is harmed by direct sun and excessive heat. The place where the flower stands must be shaded.
In winter, the plant needs lighting. Varieties with emerald foliage require brighter light, and those with silver - partial shade.
Watering. In hot weather, the flower needs high humidity in the range of 60-70%. The soil in pots with Tillandsia must be moistened all the time, not to dry out. It is also advisable to moisten the leaf rosettes. In winter, the amount of watering is reduced, allowing the earth to dry out slightly.
The plant needs regular and abundant spraying. It is important not to allow water to fall on the prills - this significantly reduces the duration of flowering.
Aerial Tillandsias need special attention. They are rootless, so they absorb moisture from the surrounding space. Once a week, they need to do "baths" - completely immersed in water for several hours. Spraying is performed three times a week.
To provide Tillandsia with an optimal level of humidity, it is recommended to place it in a florarium or place a humidifier nearby.
Water and spray the plant with soft water. Distilled and tap will harm the plant.
Temperature. In summer, the temperature is 20-28 degrees. You can keep Tillandsia outdoors in a slightly shaded area. In winter, the optimal temperature is 18-24 degrees.
The tropical flower does not tolerate the cold. The temperature should not drop below 13 degrees.
Top dressing. In the spring and summer, you need to spray the foliage with fertilizer intended for bromeliads or orchids. The top dressing should not contain boron with copper. The concentration of the mixture should be reduced by 4 times with the dosage indicated in the instructions. You can not add the fertilizing mixture to the soil - this will negatively affect weak rhizomes.
Bloom. The flowering of Tillandsia depends on the variety. Usneiform variety, for example, will expel small greenish-yellow flowers.
In some species, flowering lasts about eight weeks, in others, several days. Most often, an exotic plant blooms in the summer.
Tillandsia pleases with its original appearance. This flower can be presented as an unusual and exotic gift.
Leaving during flowering. The room where the Tillandsia pot stands should be ventilated from time to time, but drafts should be avoided. Take care of good lighting, high-quality irrigation and timely feeding.
If Tillandsia does not bloom for a long time, you can stimulate this process by spraying the foliage daily with a solution of Zircon.
Transfer. Tillandsia is transplanted only once after purchase in the store. Polycarpous plants are moved to a new location every 2-3 years. The bottom of the pot is lined with a thick drainage layer, adding charcoal there.
The flower is carefully removed from the old container, freeing its rhizomes from clods of earth and placed in a new one. The pot should be large and shallow, since the roots to Tillandsia are poorly developed. It is recommended to give preference to clay and ceramic containers. Numerous holes need to be made in plastic pots.
Every spring, the top layer of the substrate is replaced.
Priming. A potted plant requires an airy, light soil that is highly moisture permeable, allowing the root system to breathe.
We advise you to buy soil for orchids. You can make soil with your own hands by mixing sand in the same amount with leafy earth, sphagnum and soil, adding a little charcoal to this mixture.
Epiphytes do not need soil, since they are devoid of roots. They are attached to the support, wrapped with a bundle of sphagnum. You can use a snag.
Reproduction. This plant is propagated in two ways - vegetative or by seeds. Most growers choose the first option. Seed propagation takes too much time and effort.
Lateral shoots are called babies, their rapid growth takes place during flowering. One plant can have from 3 to 8 babies.
After the end of flowering, the young that have sprouted are planted. The rooting of daughter shoots takes 2 to 3 months. After that, they are transplanted into orchid soil.
If there is only one escape, the matter is greatly simplified. The old plant is removed to make room for the new one. Young Tillandsia bloom should be expected after 2-3 years.
For seed propagation of Tillandsia, sprouted seeds should be chosen. They are planted in a moistened substrate of sand and peat. They are scattered over the surface of the soil without deepening into the soil. Cover from above with glass or film and place it in a warm place (the recommended temperature is +25 degrees). The sprouts appear in about 4 weeks. Wait for flowers after 5 years.
Diseases and pests. Healthy flowers are resistant to pest attacks. But if the plant is weakened, mealybugs, scabbards or whiteflies can settle on it. You can solve the problem by washing the foliage with soapy water and treating it with insecticidal agents.
Fungicides are used to combat the fungus. The disease can be recognized by the dark marks on the foliage.
Interesting Facts. Tillandsia is also called "Spanish moss" because it is found in large numbers in the US state of Louisiana. There are many swamps in those places. Birds use this plant to build nests.
Bedding is stuffed with Tillandsia leaves, and upholstered furniture is also made from this plant.