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Southwest Regional Reports

The Wonderful World of Air Plants

These easy-care favorites can grow almost anywhere—indoors or out

These sky plants (Tillandia ionantha, Zones 9–12) are just beginning to bloom. Photo: Jennifer Benner

Air plants (Tillandsia spp., Zones 10–12) are beautiful little creatures, though they intimidate many plant lovers. They have become quite trendy over the past few years, and you can’t look through a furniture or decor catalog without spotting a few. We’ve pulled together photos and descriptions of some of our favorite species, as well as a quick guide on how to care for them and creative ways to display them.

funckiana air plants
These funckiana air plants have short, fuzzy tendrils of foliage. Photo: Laurel Startzel

Air plants are extremely hardy as houseplants, and they love the outdoors as long as they’re in a frost-free environment. They require bright, filtered light and can grow almost anywhere— whether it’s hanging from a string or sitting in a decorative bowl. Some people prefer to mist their air plants to keep them happy; we prefer the dunking method. Once every two weeks, we take all…

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