How to Take Care of Epiphytic Plants

A bromeliad, the pineapple plant is epiphytic.
A bromeliad, the pineapple plant is epiphytic. (Image: Images)

Epiphytic plants are also known as air plants. Staghorn ferns, orchids and bromeliads are several well-known varieties of epiphytes. These plants grow without dirt -- instead they grow from another plant or a rock, sustaining themselves on decaying matter. A feature common to epiphytes is the need for a warm temperature and high humidity. Care must be taken when watering these plants to keep them from becoming waterlogged and, subsequently, dying.

Things You'll Need

  • Spray bottle
  • Tray
  • Pebbles

Allow your epiphyte to grow on the bark of a tree, on a rock or even in a wire basket lined with moss.

Provide your epiphytic plant with bright, filtered light and moderate wind protection, preferably on the west side of a structure.

Mist the epiphytic plant daily with water from a spray bottle, or place its pot into a tray lined with pebbles and filled slightly with water.

Give your epiphyte a warm bath treatment once weekly. Soak its roots with lukewarm water for 15 minutes.

Move your epiphytic plant indoors during cooler seasons, unless you live in an area conducive year-round to the growth of your particular epiphyte. In general, they thrive best in areas above 55 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit, so if winter temperatures drop below that threshold, carry them indoors to a warmer environment.

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