Tillandsia ionantha (Sky Plant)

Scientific Name

Tillandsia ionantha Planch.

Common Names

Sky Plant, Blushing Bride, Air Plant


Tillandsia ionantha var. ionantha, Pityrophyllum erubescens, Tillandsia erubescens, Pityrophyllum gracile, Tillandsia rubentifolia, Tillandsia scopus

Scientific Classification

Family: Bromeliaceae
Subfamily: Tillandsioideae
Genus: Tillandsia


Color: Violet and yellow
Bloom Time: Mid fall to early winter


Tillandsia ionantha is a small evergreen epiphyte with compact rosettes of green and silver-hued leaves, turning to a deeper shade of green when mature. It grows up to 5 inches (12.5 cm) tall. Inner leaves are deep red at the time of flowering. The inflorescence is a reduced panicle with a spike-like appearance. The violet petals are over 1.6 inches (4 cm) long, and the yellow stamens and pistil protrude from the end. The fruit is a subcylindric capsule, up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) long.

Tillandsia ionantha (Sky Plant)
Photo via bromeliad.org.au


USDA hardiness zones 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Like most plants, the first step in learning how to grow an Air Plant is learning about their natural habitats. These plants are native to forests and mountains in Central and South America and the southern United States.

From late summer to mid-spring, water your Air Plants by misting them daily. Unlike potted houseplants, you can't really overwater an Air Plant.

Keep in mind that these plants primarily come from warm and humid environments. If you live in a dry climate or have forced air, you will need to provide adequate humidity by regularly misting your Air Plants.

A bright, sunny window, alcove, or porch where the Air Plant gets some protection from the full sun is ideal for these plants. Remember, they grow in tree canopies and mountains where they get dabbled light and some shade. Too much direct sunlight will lead to your plant drying out or the leaves burning. See more at How to Grow and Care for Air Plants.


Tillandsia ionantha is native to Central America and Mexico.



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