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Help Please! Tillandsia(air plants) dying...

Posted by junglspy z7 GA (My Page) on
Wed, Jun 29, 05 at 17:11

Some of my air plants, are dying and i can't figure out why, the ones in trouble are Tillandsia Bulbosa, and what i think is a hybrid circinnatoides x ionantha(not sure, because some are so similar). They bloomed beautifully, and then the bulbosa started getting all hollow feeling at the base, and the spiky leaves are starting to peel off. with the other one, it's beginning to get kind of soft and brown. I thought i was taking really good care of the bulbosa, i hung it upside down, outside(in FL) and misted often, the other was inside/outside, in a seashell, that got misted often as well.
What could be wrong? can these be saved? if not, what should i do next time.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Help Please! Tillandsia(air plants) dying...

You state that they have bloomed - it's natural for them to die after blooming, but there should be some small pups coming out at the base of the old plants. If so, just keep treating them the same; as the old plant dies, some nutrients will be transferred to the pups. You are correct in hanging the bulbosa upsside down, but the other should be removed from the shell and also mounted sideways or upside down.

Tillandsia is one type of bromeliad that does benefit from fertilizer. You may want to mist with a very dilute fert6ilizer solution, alternating it with pure water.

RE: Help Please! Tillandsia(air plants) dying...

  • Posted by minibot z9/10NorCA Sz17 (My Page) on
    Thu, Jun 30, 05 at 18:59

Yes, they'll die slowly and send out pups slowly (according to me in my first year of keeping them :-)). I had two pups, one came out first and then fell off, then another came and stuck around. It is around 7 inches long and about an inch or so in diameter now (mine was a streptophyllum and bulbosa cross I think...). It takes a lot of patience and mine seems to be pretty slow going. I hang mine in a sunny window that is blocked by a rice paper shade. I fertilize when I soak them...I don't know if I'm doing it right, but both of my Tilladsias are hanging in there almost a year later. I can't wait for them to rebloom!


RE: Help Please! Tillandsia(air plants) dying...

I've given up on tillandsias. I buy them in bloom, they die, never send up pups. I had one bulbosa that lived several years before it finally died, but it never bloomed. I just don't have luck with them.

RE: Help Please! Tillandsia(air plants) dying...

I don't either but can grow all kinds of bromeliads. And they should do well here, high humidity, heat. Ah, well, can't have everything I guess, but we can sure try.
Tally HO!

RE: Help Please! Tillandsia(air plants) dying...

  • Posted by luxum 9/10 Tampa FL (My Page) on
    Mon, Jul 18, 05 at 14:07

It sounds to me like you might be misting too often. Tillis need to be watered, but they also need to dry out, and they must have good air circulation. For growing outdoors in Florida, it's much easier to grow the types that have the fuzzy grey leaves than the smooth green ones.

RE: Help Please! Tillandsia(air plants) dying...

They don't bloom all that often for me -- but I don't much care. That's not what I grow Tillies for. I've got a garden full of roses for blooms -- I love Tillies for the curiosly interesting things that they are.

Jeri Jennings
Coastal Southern California

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