[align=left]Light:[/align]


[align=left]Lighting for tillandsias should be bright but filtered. They should not be left in the direct sun in the summer months, this will cause the plant to become sunburned. Tillandsias like direct sun from November to March in North America. Fresh moving air is advisable, but most important is the need for bright filtered light.[/align]


[align=left]The thicker or stiffer the leaves, and the more grey or white their color, the more light the plant need. These light-colored, thick or stiff leaved plants grow in full sun in their native habitats, and can often tolerate full sun in humid areas outside of their native areas. However, it is recommended that even these types of air plants be grown in brighter shade....between 2000 to 7000 footcandles of light is best. The green to light green airplants with softer leaves are adapted to growing in shady conditions and do best in 2000 to 4000 footcandles of light.[/align]


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[align=left]Artificial Light:[/align]


[align=left]Full spectrium artificial light (fluorescent) is best. Plants should be no further than 36" from the fluorescent tubes and can be as close as 6". A four tube 48" fixture works best. Bulbs can be any full spectrium type (Gro-Lux; Repta-Sun; Vita-Lite, etc). Light should be set at 12 hours a day with a timer.[/align]


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[align=left]Water:[/align]


[align=left]The recommended method of watering is by drenching so the plants end up thoroughly wet, to the point of runoff. For indoor plants, you can do this in the kitchen sink and use a watering can or the sink hose sprayer, it only takes a few seconds to get the plant thoroughly wet. The frequency depends on temperature, humidity, plant species, plant size, and air circulation. For most outdoor and indoor situations, watering 2 to 3 times a week is sufficient. If conditions are hot and dry, water more often. Plants should be given enough light and air circulation to dry in no longer than 4 hours after watering. If air circulation is not good, use an electric fan. Spray misting is insufficient as the sole means of watering even if done daily, but may be beneficial between waterings in dry climates to increase humidity. To check for dryness. look at the leaf bases in the central part of the plant. Plants may look dry, but moisture may be present in the central meristematic area. If this area remaines too wet for too long, the plant may rot.[/align]


[align=left]An alternative watering method is soaking. Soaking is recommended if plants become severely dehydrated, indicated by limp, wrinkled, or curved leaf edges. If symptoms indicate dehydration, drenching usually won't bring the plants out of the dehydrated state, so the plants should be submerged in water for up to 12 hours. Soaking every 10 days to two weeks will keep plants happy and meet the plants needs. After watering, plants with thick fleshy leaves that tend to trap water in their centers, should be turned upside down and shaken to remove trapped water.[/align]


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[align=left]Air Circulation:[/align]


[align=left]Following each watering, Tillandsias should be given enough light and air circulation to dry in 4 hours or less. Do not keep plants constantly wet or moist. If plants are allowed to stay wet for too long, fatal rot can develop.[/align]


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[align=left]Temperature:[/align]


[align=left]Optimum temperatures range for tillandsias is 50 to 90 degrees F, but they can tolerate temps from freezing to above 100 F. Do not expose to freezing temperatures.[/align]


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[align=left]Fertilizer:[/align]


[align=left]Use Bromeliad fertilizer (17-8-22) twice a month at half strength. It is great for blooming and reproduction. Other water-soluble fertilizers can be used at 1/4 strength (Rapid-Grow; Miracle-Grow; Peters, etc.) if bromeliad fertilizer is not available. Do not fertilize newly recieved plants for at least three weeks.[/align]


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[align=left]Mounting Tillandsias:[/align]


[align=left]Mount plants on almost anything, (no pressure-treated wood) driftwood, manzanita, seashells, coral, lava rock, using a non-water soluble glue as "Liquid Nails", E-6000 craft glue, or just silicon caulk #1. Set plants on prospective mount, if you like the arrangement, place the glue on the mount, then place the plant on the glue. Larger plants may be supported with fishing line until the glue drys.[/align]

[align=left]http://www.freewebs.com/jacksbromeliads/[/align]


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