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When you think of the typical houseplant, you may picture a light green fern with dozens of dangling fronds. Or perhaps you envision a colorful African violet flourishing in a small container on your coffee table. But for your next houseplant, why not go with an unconventional option? Tillandsdia, also known as air plants, are growing in popularity with people who want attractive houseplants that require very little attention. This week’s post is all about air plants, how to care for them, and how they can add interest to any room in a home.
The Facts on Air Plants
As I started my research, I had a basic question: Why are they called air plants? I discovered that these warm-weather plants can flourish without any soil. An air plant’s leaves absorb all of the sunlight, water, and nutrients that it needs to grow. The roots of an air plant wind around shrubs, rocks, and other items on the ground.
How to Care for Air Plants
Air plants need water and sunlight to grow indoors. An air plant must be soaked in water for about 20 to 30 minutes twice a week. Make sure your air plant is completely dry before placing it back into its vase. An adequate amount of light and air circulation helps an air plant to dry after a thorough watering. Also, it’s a good idea to mist the plant twice a week. Don’t use distilled water to nourish your air plant because it won’t get the nutrients it needs to grow. Find a place for your plant where it will receive partial sunlight. These plants can do well when placed two or three feet away from a sunny window.
Air Plants as Gifts
Getting an air plant for yourself is a fun idea. They also make great gifts for practically any occasion. I think an air plant would be a lovely gift for a friend living in an apartment. In fact, I gave one to my best friend who is an apartment-dweller in New York. She loves having a beautiful plant that doesn’t take up too much space. If you have young kids, an air plant would be a nice gift for their teacher to keep in the classroom. Today, brides are using air plants as wedding favors. They put these plants in decorative containers so their guests can watch them continue to flourish in their homes.
Displaying Your Air Plant
You can get really creative when thinking of ways to display your air plant. Some people put them in glass globes and hang them from the ceiling. This allows you to see this interesting plant from all angles. You could also put your plant in a glass cylinder. Place a few colorful glass pebbles in the cylinder to add even more appeal to your plant’s habitat.
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Interesting Facts About Air Plants
- There are 500-plus varieties of this tropical plant.
- The air plant is a close relative of the pineapple.
- Air plants produce yellow-purple flowers.
Try adding an air plant to your home and see how many compliments you get on your non-traditional taste in houseplants!