tillandsia ionantha air plants in blush and bloom

How to Get An Air Plant To Bloom

2 comments by Jamie Beck

Tillandsia air plants are unique and fascinating plants that are often sought after for their beautiful blooms. While air plants are relatively low-maintenance and easy to care for, getting them to bloom can be a bit of a challenge. With the right conditions, however, you can encourage your air plant to produce a stunning display of colors and blooms! Here we discuss actions you can take to get the most out of your Tillandsia. 

air plant tillandsia fertilizer spray

Monthly Fertilization

Fertilizing is one important step in giving your air plant an extra boost to help it grow and reach maturity. Using a fertilizer specifically formulated for Tillandsia, such as our Ready-to-Use Spray or Plant Food Packet, will provide the necessary ratios of Nitrogen, Potassium, and Phosphorous to keep your plant properly nourished. Remember, a little fertilizer goes a long way so keep in mind not to over-fertilize and to stick to a monthly feeding routine.

Provide Bright Light

Proper lighting is also essential for air plants to bloom. While they can be displayed indoors, they still need light as if they were outside. Indirect light is recommended, but most plants will happily endure one to three hours of direct gentle morning or evening sun. If your climate is warm, try placing your mature plant outdoors with filtered light and adequate moisture and it should jump-start the blooming cycle. Avoid placing air plants in windowless rooms or bathrooms as they will not receive enough sunlight to produce the energy needed to bloom! Additionally, air plants can sunburn, so it's important to provide a balance of direct and indirect light. For more information and tips on light requirements, read our How Much Light Exposure Does Your Plant Need? blog. 

air plant tillandsia bloom flower

If you notice your air plant’s leaves are beginning to change color, often with bright and vibrant shades of red or pink, then this is a good sign that the plant is beginning its blooming cycle. We call this “blushing”. By providing proper hydration and nutrition, and plenty of bright light, you will see your plant continue to grow and start to blush over time. Each plant is different, and some will take much longer to bloom than others so be patient and your air plant will eventually reward you with beautiful blooms!


Can’t wait to experience blooming tillys? Our Color, Bud + Blush listing contains an assortment of blushing, budding, and blooming air plants (availability depends on current inventory). Once you have a bloomer, check out our guide on Caring for Blooming Air Plants.


Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram and Facebook to see what is currently in bloom!


  • Pancham

    I am a plant lover and love nature

  • Lisa Reichert

    You have great advice.
    Thank you!

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