Tillandsia usneoides L.

Spanish Moss

Pendent epiphyte, hanging in feathery grey clumps. Stem very slender, less than 1 mm thick, sinuous. Leaves in tufts of 2 or 3 at intervals along the stem; sheath about 1 cm long; blade 3-6 cm long. Inflorescence single-flowered; petals green.

Southern North America and most of South America

One of the most common tillandsias in cultivation.


T. erubescens Schltr. from Mexico has many leaves, densely many-ranked with blades often secund, to 20 cm long, grey scaled; sheaths inconspicuous; blades narrowly triangular 5-15 mm wide. Scape erect to recurved with leaf-like bracts at base, rose pink, sparsely scaly. Inflorescence usually simple and many-ranked, few-flowered, densely ellipsoid, to 9 cm long, 3 cm wide; spikes 1 or 2 flowered; floral bracts 2.5-3.5 cm long equalling the sepals; sepals white, hairless; petals 7 cm long, pale green, forming a tube; stamens protruding. Was known as T. benthamiana until 1981.

Source: Christensen, T.; Butcher, D. (2005). Bromeliaceae. In: Spencer, R.. Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 5. Flowering plants. Monocotyledons. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.

Distribution map
kingdom Plantae
phylum   Tracheophyta
class    Magnoliopsida
superorder     Lilianae
order      Poales
family       Bromeliaceae
genus        Tillandsia L.