Air Plant ‘Rubra’ is a great little air plant which is native to Mexico. They typically grow on rocks and sometimes on tree branches. This variety is particularly suitable for terrariums or my unique porcelain hanging planters. I personally love the colour of this particular air plant variety, the red foliage is very attractive. The red colouration appears when the air plant is close to flowering and when it has good levels of light. The fronds will return to a green colour after flowering and if light levels are reduced. Either way, the colours contrast well against the neutral porcelain of my hanging planters including the taupe, rose and green options.
Air Plant Tillandsia ionantha ‘Rubra’ will eventually grow up to 15 cm.
Living Conditions and Care
Air Plants like to live in rooms where there is good ventilation and light. Light, airy bathrooms are perfect because they can absorb the moisture in the air. I house my air plants in a room which has a glass roof. This means they get plenty of light and air circulation. Air plants need to be sprayed with either rain water or filtered water at least twice a week (more often if the weather is hot). Tap water is not ideal because it contains low levels of soluble metals which damage their health. Copper is particularly poisonous for air plants.
They actually enjoy being sprayed and drying out in warmth. Even though rain water and filtered water will suffice, they enjoy having a nutrient boost every now and then. You can purchase a nutrient spray in my shop.
Air plants need air movement in order to thrive. Often people use glass globes or place them on pieces of drift wood. As a contemporary alternative, how about housing them in a porcelain hanging planter? This way you can hang them from a window handle, ceiling hook, or picture rail (with a picture hook). The porcelain is beautifully transparent when placed in front light and the recess gives air plants plenty of room for air circulation.
Besides being lovely additions to your home, air plants also have the power to both filter and cleanse the air. So as well as looking beautiful suspended in my porcelain hanging planters, they will also Improve the quality of the air in your home.
Dispatch and Suppliers
Please note this item is supplied by a third party so their dispatch terms will be different to my own.
Alternative Recommended Suppliers
If you would like to choose from a wider range of air plants lovingly grown by a botanical expert, visit my friend Andy’s site. He has won many awards at RHS shows for his air plant displays, including gold medal at Chelsea in 2019. You will also find more detailed care advice here.
If you are local to Bristol, I also recommend Brackenwood Garden Centre where they have a good selection of different air plants species to choose from.