PLANTS THAT DON’T NEED SOIL
What is an air plant?
An air plant is able to live and grow mostly from the humidity, which is why the plant only needs little care. The plant is an epiphyte with very few or even no roots, as it originally grows on other plants and trees. In the wild, air plants take in their nutrients from humidity and rain. This happens with help of the trichomes; the tiny white structures on the leaves of the plant. These trichomes mediate the process of absorbing water leading to more efficiency in the process. An air plant does not need any soil in order to grow or flourish. That’s right, an air plant could also bloom a purple and yellow flower in exceptional cases. Specific species will also be turning into a red colour in their flowering stage.
Where do air plants grow?
These unique plants originally grow in tropical areas, mainly in Central- and South America. Our air plants are grown from cuttings or seeds in Guatemala, a country known for its ancient Maya civilization.
How old is an air plant?
The majority of the air plants you’ll find is more than two years old. An exception is the Tillandsia xerographica, which will on average be approximately four years old as you find them in-store, but is able to get up to 20 years old!
Tillandsia and air plants, how do these two relate?
In essence, both names point out the same plant species. Tillandsia is the name of the genus, where the name air plants is being used for the Tillandsia species that are able to grow without soil.
How many different species of air plants are there?
There are over 500 different air plant species! The most common species are the ionantha, abdita, multiflora, juncea, caput medusae, magnusiana, circinata, harrisii, schiedeana, usneoides and of course the xerographica (also known as the king of airplants).
How do I take care of my air plant?
In general, air plants require little care. Though, it is important that you spray them regularly. It is recommended to spray your air plant once every two weeks on colder days and once every week during warmer days, preferably with the Take Airplants care spray. Also, soaking the air plants monthly in water for 120-180 minutes is very much appreciated, after this you should let the air plants dry out completely. We advise you to begin this soaking method right after your purchase if the air plants don’t have a healthy look. It is recommended to repeat this soaking method again if the air plants start to lose their healthy look. Airplants can be put inside as well as outside with a temperature between 5 and 35 degrees Celsius. The plants do not like to be put in full sun, but do like to have a bright spot.
Air plant care
A common misunderstanding about air plants is that they do not need any care at all. Unfortunately, this is not true. Though, relatively they do require very little care. Originally, air plants are able to live from the humidity in the air, which is why they are called so. It is a very strong type of plant, needing less care than most of the other types of houseplants. Airplants have little fuzzy grey/white hairs on their leaves, which are called trichomes. Via these structures, they are able to get the needed nutrients from the air in a very effective way. The humidity in their native areas is much higher than here, which is why air plants do need some care!
How to care for air plants?
Spray your air plant regularly / soak your air plant. Specific information can be found below.
Put your air plant in a bright spot, preferably with air circulation as it needs to dry off after watering
Protect your air plant from frosts at all times
Protect your air plant from direct sunlight (indirect sunlight is the best)
When your air plant gets a flower, it’s in its final phase. You can extend the life of the air plant to take the flower out.
Airplant in an open environment
In warmer months, it is perfect to spray your air plant once/twice a week. This can be done once every two weeks during colder months. Preferably spray your air plant with the Take Airplants care spray, which has the right fertilizers. It can also be done with water (preferably natural water, but hard water is also fine). Important is that air plants need time to dry off completely. In addition to regular spraying, soaking the air plants monthly is very much recommended. Feel free to read more about the ‘soaking method’ at the bottom of this page.
Airplant in the open glass
Basically, the same care as discussed above applies to air plants in an open glass. However, it is very much recommended to get the air plant out of the glass once you spray it. Also, the advice is to let the air plant dry off completely before putting it in the glass again. Spraying with the Take Airplants care spray is preferred, whereas it is also possible with water (natural water is better than hard water/water from the tap). To further improve the health of your air plants, the monthly soaking method can also be applied here of which the details are discussed at the bottom of this page. Important is to always let your air plant dry off completely before putting it back in the glass.
Airplant in closed environment/closed glass
Normally an air plant in a closed environment/closed glass doesn’t need water. The air plant can live from the humidity. You only need to keep a good eye on the appearance of the air plant. Whenever you see that it’s losing its healthy, we recommend you to apply the soaking method. This method is discussed in detail at the bottom of this page. The most important thing after soaking is to let the air plant dry off completely in an open environment with good air circulation and bright light (no direct sunlight). After the soaking method, you’ll find your air plant getting its strong and healthy look again, after which it could be put back into the glass. Whenever you see the same deteriorating process happen again, the process can be repeated.
To make your air plants even happier, it is recommended to soak them monthly in a container with water (natural water is preferred over hard water). Your air plants will suck up the water for a period of time. After 30-60 minutes of soaking, the air plants like to be put in a bright spot with good air circulation to dry off completely. You’ll see the air plants getting their strong and healthy look after that. Very important is the drying off process.