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Tillandsia usneoides

Pronunciation: Til-land-see-uh us-nee-oy-deez
Family: Bromeliaceae
Synonym: Dendropogon usneoides
Common Name: Spanish moss
Plant Type:
  • epiphyte, terrestrial
Height to: 20'
USDA Hardiness Zones:
  • 20 to 10ºF ZONE 8
  • 30 to 20ºF ZONE 9
  • 40 to 30ºF ZONE 10
  • 50 to 40ºF ZONE 11
Sun Exposure:
  • part sun
  • full sun
Bloom Season:
  • late spring
  • early summer
Bloom Description: Spanish moss (tillandsia usneoides) flowers are inconspicuous, pale green or blue, and fragrant at night. Spanish moss is not related to mosses at all, but is in fact closely related to the pineapple and other bromeliads or "air plants. "
Propagation: Spanish moss (tillandsia usneoides) produces tiny seeds that sail on the wind and stick fast to tree branches. Birds and the wind carry fragments of the plant to new locations, probably the commonest means of propagation.
Native to: Spanish moss (tillandsia usneoides) is native to the southeastern u. S. Coastal plain from virginia to texas. It also occurs in the west indies and central and south america as far south as argentina. Spanish moss hangs from tree limbs, especially live oak and cypress, (and sometimes even fences and telephone wires).
Notes for Identification: Source: floridataspanish moss (tillandsia usneoides) has no roots and gets all the water it needs from the rain. During dry periods, it becomes dormant and waits it out, to resurrect itself when the rain returns. Spanish moss (tillandsia usneoides) is not a parasite. That is, it does not take nutrients or water from the host tree on which it lives. However, occasionally, spanish moss can become so thick that it shades the leaves of its host, or, when heavy with rainwater, breaks a branch. Although a tree might be weakened, it would not likely be killed by spanish moss. However, it is considered a pest in pecan orchards.   for more than two centuries spanish moss (tillandsia usneoides) was harvested commercially, and tons of it were shipped to detroit for use in automobile seats and to other cities in america and europe for mattress and furniture stuffing. It was said to make the coolest mattresses, an important consideration in the days before air conditioning. Until the 1960's spanish moss was still harvested by moss pickers wielding long poles, cured in moss yards to remove the outer gray "bark", ginned at commercial moss gins, and then baled for shipmentreadmore about spanish moss (tillandsia usneoides) from the university of florida  
Seed photo: 0
Seed Label: 0
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