Tillandsia usneoides, also known as Spanish moss is an air plant, belonging to the bromeliad family. This is mostly found adorning old trees and branches by giving an enchanting, mystical look with its long, silvery green cascades. It can be grown as an indoor plant and can be styled in many ways, to give a rare and eye-catching decor piece. Native to the southeastern USA, the spanish moss needs minimal care and since it’s an air plant, it needs absolutely no soil to grow. Here’s all you need to know to grow spanish moss.
Common name: Spanish Moss, Air plant, Old Man’s beard, Tree hair
Scientific name: Tillandsia usneoides
Size: Can grow upto 20-25 feet
Maintenance: Moderate. Since these are unusual plants, caring for them needs some figuring out. They need to be misted several times in a week.
Toxicity: Non ToxicWhere to keep the plant: Keep the plant in bright indirect light, styling around branches or allowing it to hang down from high shelves or walls.
Soak it in water thrice a week during summers. During winters however, limit the wearing to once every 10 days. Take your plant and completely submerge it in a container filled with water or in a sink, for about 15 minutes. Then gently take it out and place it upside down on a towel to dry. Let it dry fully in a bright spot before placing back.
Bright indirect light with some morning sunshine is good for air plants. The best part is that they do very well even under fluorescent light. Avoid strong direct light as it can burn these plants.
No soil required.Never try to grow air plants in soil. It’s not their tendency to grow in soil and trying that will eventually kill them. They get their water requirements from atmospheric humidity.
Since these are dependent on atmospheric moisture, they prefer relatively high humidity. Mist the plants 2-3 times a week if you live in dry regions. However, do make sure you shake off the excess water as that can cause rotting.
Even air plants need some fertilizing to thrive. You may add a fertilizer to the water before soaking every one or two months to speed up growth.
The best way to propagate tillandsia is through fragments or by dividing the strands.