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Giant wild-pine, Giant airplant
Tillandsia utriculata
Bromeliaceae


General Landscape Uses:

Accent epiphyte; on live oaks along forest edges.

Ecological Restoration Notes:

A relatively common epiphyte in hammocks and swamps.
Availability:
Grown by enthusiasts.
Description:
Epiphytic herb; or terrestrial growing in leaf litter.
Dimensions:
12-30 inches in height; 6 feet or more in flower.
Growth Rate:
Slow.
Range:
Monroe County Keys north to Flagler, Putnam, Lake and Citrus counties; West Indies, Mexico, Central America and northern South America.
Habitats:
Moist forests and swamps.
Soils:
Epiphytic; or terrestrial in moist, well-drained humusy leaf litter, acid to neutral pH.
Nutritional Requirements:
Low; it grows on nutrient poor substrate.
Salt Water Tolerance:
Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.
Salt Wind Tolerance:
Moderate; grows near salt water, but is protected from direct salt spray by other vegetation.
Drought Tolerance:
High; does not require any supplemental water once established.
Light Requirements:
Light shade.
Flower Color:
Greenish-yellow.
Flower Characteristics:
Semi-showy inflorescence.
Flowering Season:
Summer-fall.
Fruit:
Green to brown capsule with hairy, wind dispersed seeds.
Horticultural Notes:
Can be grown from seed. This is a monocarpic species, which dies after flowering.
Comments:
It is listed as endangered by the state of Florida.


 


Roger L. Hammer
Roger L. Hammer