Do Air Plants Need Water? (Answered)

Air plants are a very popular indoor plant because they do not require soil, just some water and light. But do they need water? Or is watering them optional? Or perhaps I should say, how often should you water air plants? If you’ve found yourself asking these questions then you’ve found the right article.

Do Air Plants Need Water?

Air plants do need water in order to grow just like most plants. The only difference is that they don’t get water from their roots. Air plants are epiphytes, meaning they live on other plants or organic material. They get their nutrients and moisture from the air.

This means that air plants need to be watered frequently. Their watering schedule will vary depending on many circumstances (the environment, the season, etc).

Some people believe that because of their name, air plants don’t need water. But this is certainly not true. Air plants do get water from the air, but they also need water in order for them to grow and thrive.

It can be confusing when you first see an air plant. You may have never seen a plant with no roots so the fact that these plants can grow with nothing but the air is mind-blowing.

Many people wonder if air plants actually need water at all, or if they are truly just growing in the air. It might be more accurate to say that air plants grow in the air and on other objects since they don’t have any true roots.

This means that watering an air plant is a little different than watering other houseplants.

How often do air plants need water?

It’s important to know that Tillandsia, or air plants, are one of the most forgiving plants on the planet. They can go long periods of time without water, and they don’t even need soil to grow. They do however, require a little bit of attention when it comes to watering them.

Depending on the climate you may need to water your air plant differently, however, the rule of thumb is to water your air plant at least once a week, in drier conditions 2-to 3 times. To water your Tillandsia first give it a gentle shake to remove any dust and debris from its leaves.

Watering needs will vary depending on the climate you live in. If you live somewhere humid, like Florida, you may only need to water your air plants once a week. If you live in Arizona or somewhere dry and hot, you may want to water your air plant 2-3 times a week. If your air plants start to get a bit crispy or brown, it’s a sign they need more water.

If you don’t know what your climate is like, most climates are considered humid except for desert climates. So if you don’t know where you fall in this category the rule of thumb is 2-3 times a week because it’s always better to underwater than overwater.

How Do You Water Air Plants?

Watering an air plant is easy. Simply submerge the plant in a bowl of water or mist it thoroughly with a spray bottle. It’s best to soak the plants for 20 minutes a week, but less frequent watering will also work. To avoid overwatering, allow the plants to dry completely before soaking again.

If you want to keep your air plants on display, use a spray bottle to mist them once every other day instead. If you can’t remember which days you’ve watered them, rotate the plants so that each one gets soaked once a week but none of them get watered twice in a row.

Soak the plants.

While a long soak is not necessary, it’s handy to give them a good soaking once every 1-2 weeks. Simply fill up a container with water and let your plant sit in the bath for 15-20 minutes.

After the soak, gently shake off the excess water and place your plant back in its home (tilted slightly to one side to allow excess water to drain).

How long can air plants go without water?

Air plants can survive a decent amount of time without water. As a rule of thumb, most air plants will survive 2 weeks without being watered, but they prefer to be misted or submerged in water weekly.

In order to thrive, air plants need bright filtered light and good air circulation. Although air plants do not have roots, they do originate from humid tropical regions and like a little more moisture than many succulents.

Air plant watering is simple and usually takes just a few minutes. Most air plants will benefit from about an hour in a bowl or sink of room temperature water every 7-10 days, although some may need a dunk every 5-7 days depending on conditions and variety.