How I keep my Xerographica air plants thriving!

Known as the Queen of air plants, the Tillandsia xerographica is a very drought tolerant plant! In fact, the species name, xerographica, says it all. The word “xeros” in Greek means dry.
💦 Most of the moisture air plants get is from the morning dew in nature. But in nature, they grow as epiphytes (attached to trees) or lithophytes (attached to rocks or stones) so they have lots of air flow around them (compared to when we keep them in our homes) so they are able to dry out each day. Xerographica often grow on the highest tree branches where they will receive very bright light.
☀️ When we keep them in our homes, we often make the mistake of not providing the xerographica air plants with enough light, and this species needs more light than most air plants! Compared to many of the thinner leaved tropical air plant cousins, the thick-leaved xerographica needs to be watered much LESS frequently! Cool, right? Indoors, I’d suggest 2x/month. If you keep it outside (at least here in Florida), you can water more frequently because the heat and wind will evaporate the moisture more quickly. So if you’ve killed air plants before because you didn’t water them enough, maybe xerographica is for you!

You might notice some xerographica are more curly than others. Depending on how dry you let it get, the leaves will be straighter or curlier. If you let your plant dry out more, the leaves will be curly. If the plant is fully hydrated, they will be straighter. SO COOL, right?!

So what do you think? Will you give xerographica a try? Or maybe you have one already and love her? Tell me in the comments!

1 comment

  • Just killed one a few weeks ago, but I’m going to try again when I’m through mourning her loss. 😭


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