Do you have extreme difficulty growing plants? Here are some plants that you will definitely love, as they grow in the air, do not need soil, and only require minimal attention. These are the "air plants" that grow in many locations throughout the U.S. There are hundreds of species, many of which have magnificent flowers. The first picture is from the website of Airplant City.Com.
One day, I was walking in my back yard, and I saw a small branch with an air plant attached, lying on the ground. I have two large Jacaranda trees growing back there, and the branch was from one of them. The attached air plant was a common one in this area, nothing “special”, and I was going to just toss it. As I picked it up, however, and looked at it, I realized that this large air plant was healthy, and I wondered about finding a place for it. It was certainly no “uglier” than other plants I had growing. So, I wedged the branch between two low limbs of the tree, with the air plant attached, and went about my business.
A few weeks later, pondering the air plant’s potential, (of which I was totally ignorant) I grabbed a handful of sand from the ground and sprinkled it over the plant. I did know that they “catch” rainwater, bugs and debris in their leaves and use it as food. So, I thought I would help out. Well, it must have appreciated what I did, because in a couple of weeks, this stalk started growing out from the middle of it, straight up. It looked like asparagus.
Today, the shoot is still the size of asparagus, but has taken on a pink tint over it’s subtle green, and is about two feet tall. It has started to put out pointed side growths toward it’s top, nothing remarkable. But I am amazed at how it responded to my “feeding.” I do spray it once in awhile with the hose, or dump water on it, because we are very dry this year down here, and I thought it might help.
I went online to look at some air plants, and was surprised to find that there is a whole industry built around the growing and selling of air plants, from all over the world. They are mounted not in soil, but on anything that they can be glued or wired to, for decorative purposes. The picture below is from Airplantcity.com.
Air plants come in some amazingly beautiful colors, with incredible flowers yearly. After flowering, they will sport “babies” that can be separated and grown separately, or be left with the mother plant to form a “clump”.
In the wild, as pictured here from Canstockphoto.com, air plants grow high in the trees, where they can get full or partial sun, and they can capture dust, bird droppings, bugs and other airborne particles that they use for food. They also love rainwater, and some species can hold in in the base of their leaves to help dissolve particles and to use to hydrate themselves.
Another type of air plant (the one with the pink flowers) is from Airplant.com, and demonstrates the magnificent potential of air plants as decorative showpieces.
Plants.web-indexes.com shows a simple mounting of a small air plant in the photo below. This website has many spectacular pictures of different types of air plants that are suitable for mounting on driftwood, in sea shells or in planters of your choice.
Airplants as a business has really taken off, as you will see with some online searches. There are many websites that sell air plants, and perhaps you have seen air plants being sold at flea markets or nurseries. Air plants are similar to orchids, in that they do not require soil to grow. For this reason, air plants are a great choice for the home or for a business venture.
Published in: Gardening