Tillandsia Bulbosa


Tillandsia bulbosa, named after the boxer, “Rocky Bulboa” ( just joking ) is a strikingly-beautiful, evergreen, bulbous species of air plant. It has smooth, almost plastic-textured, long and thin leaves. This air plant has a bulb base which is covered by purple-shaded leaf sheaths clothed in gray trichomes.

The species of T.bulbosa is widespread throughout Central and South America; growing in countries such as Colombia, southern Mexico, Venezuela and the West Indies. It grows on shrubs and trees along the coastline, and can be found growing further up at elevations well passed 1000m.

Tillandsia bulbosa do well in multiple climates and can be cared for easily in just about any conditions. In their natural environment they are exposed to high-humidity, medium to strong light, and significant air movement.

The plant reaches a size of between 12cm in height and 15cm across. During blooming, the floral spike extends out even further, and the plant blushes a cherry-red.

It is a curious species, and a worthy purchase. Get yourself a Tillandsia “Rocky Bulboa” bulbosa today.



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Tillandsia bulbosa has bright, wavy, green leaves which are smooth to the touch. It has a bulb-like base, making it a myrmecophyte, in which ants use the structure as a shelter or storage.

When this air plant blooms, the leave tips and inflorescence becomes a bright cherry-red color, which in nature, is used to attract bird species for pollination. The flowers are lavender-purple, with yellow stamens, typical of sub-genus Tillandsia.

Tillandsia bulbosa Care

T.bulbosa enjoys medium light, high humidity and frequent watering, especially in areas of significant air movement. It can be grown successfully with frequent watering or misting and medium to low levels of light. As long as adequate moisture is available, high temperatures can be tolerated. It is important to shake off or dry the base of the plant after soaking, as water that sits for too long may lead to rot.  This species is considered ageotropic, meaning it grows up, down, sideways, etc. In the wild they are normally found growing horizontally or upside down to prevent the bulb from rotting. So consider mounting it to a piece of bark or cork, either sideways or upside down. It can be strung from a piece of natural rope or wire too.

During flowering, one to three small offsets (pups) appear from the base of the mother plant. After seed set the mother plant will die but the pups will replace it. Over time, this air plant will form a cluster.

Additional information

Dimensions 3 x 3 x 8 cm

Tillandsias // Air Plants

We have an extensive collection of Tillandsias. They are an incredible epiphyte that grows naturally in Central and South America. They are simply magical and do well as a standalone piece or displayed in a terrarium or mount. These are some of our favorites:

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