The latest interior decoration trend among owners of lofts, penthouses, and condos in East Village San Diego consists of growing epiphytic plants, which are those that gather the nutrients and moisture they need from the air instead of the ground. The genus of epiphytes is Tillandsia. There are many species within this genus, and most of them share a look similar to young aloe plants minus the roots and thorns.
Tillandsia plants are affectionately called “tillies” by indoor gardeners who are fond of caring for these pretty air plants and making them the centerpiece of home decoration projects. In nature, air plants often grow on top of trees, rocks or other plants. However, they are not parasitic. They only need surfaces for support and require very little in terms of care and nurturing.
Understanding Air Plants
In the Americas, air plants grow wherever there are cacti, orchids, bromeliads, and friendly trees to support them. Given the right ecosystem with plenty of sunshine, moisture, and nutrients, air plants can easily thrive as long as they have something to cling on to. Unlike mistletoe and some vines, air plants are not parasites and do not affect their hosts.
Caring for Air Plants
San Diego homeowners who lack a green thumb should have no problem caring for tillies. Their clinging ability is derived from their roots, and they are able to get nutrients from trichrome scales on their leaves. It is important to give these plants filtered sunlight from windows that face the east, west, or south. Since the air in San Diego is not particularly humid, tillies need to be completely submerged in water once a week for a few hours. Otherwise, they will require daily misting.
When spraying air plants, it is important to make sure water does not accumulate in the center. Some gardeners recommend adding fertilizer to the spray water bottles used for misting. The specific fertilizer formula should not have a high concentration of nitrogen. Another important aspect of caring for Tillandsias is to keep them in places where they will get plenty of air circulation.
One of the greatest advantages of Tillandsias, aside from their minimal care, is that they look great and can be placed just about anywhere in a loft, penthouse, or condo. Air plants like to be above ground, and one of the most popular decorative ideas is to place them inside orbs or fishbowls made of glass or plastic. Using porous rocks and sand, small terrariums can be placed inside bowls so tillies can cling and thrive. It is important to remember these bowls and orbs should have holes to facilitate air circulation. Other popular decorations involving Tillandsias include hanging baskets and pieces of bamboo that have been hollowed out.
Air plants are a great addition to any condo, loft, or penthouse. If you’re looking to purchase real estate, East Village San Diego is one of the hottest neighborhoods in downtown. Get in touch with 92101 Urban Living if you’d like to see the latest listings. Call 619-649-0368 today to schedule an appointment.