Ball Moss (Tillandsia recurvata) in the Air Plants Database

Common names:
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General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Herb/Forb
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Partial Shade to Full Shade
Plant Height: to 12 inches
Plant Spread: 7 inches but clump of individuals can be much larger
Leaves: Evergreen
Other: Leaves are typically gray, gray-green, or white
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Flower Color: Other: violet
Flower Time: Late winter or early spring
Suitable Locations: Terrariums
Propagation: Other methods: Division
Other: divide clumps & tie to trees or branches
Containers: Not suitable for containers
Miscellaneous: Epiphytic


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Posted by plantladylin (Southeast Florida - Zone 10a) on Sep 8, 2011 3:55 PM

"Ball Moss" is commonly seen attached to trees in the deep south. It is not parasitic as some believe, deriving only physical support from the host plant that it clings to. It can hinder tree growth by competing for light and nutrients and restricting surface area for new branch formation but doesn't usually affect a healthy host plant. Ball Moss photosynthesizes its own food, receiving water from rain and nitrogen from bacteria. The blooms are rather bland but interesting.

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Posted by SongofJoy (Clarksville, TN - Zone 6b) on Sep 4, 2013 3:27 PM

This Tillandsia grows well with the low light, little airflow, and high humidity commonly provided by Southern shade trees, particularly the Southern Live Oak, where it can frequently be found.

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Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Ball moss seed pods by mw236 Jan 5, 2013 5:06 PM 1
Deserve by webesemps Oct 13, 2014 10:13 AM 2
Tillandsia recurvata by needrain Dec 3, 2018 10:56 PM 55
What else do we grow in 2018 by hawkarica Dec 15, 2018 4:41 PM 1,205
Copperheads and Cicadas by Bubbles Jun 25, 2018 7:34 AM 17
Help please: Can my Tillandsia ball moss / Spanish moss be saved? by beachcomber Jul 14, 2017 7:31 AM 2
Things I'm enjoying right now by needrain Jan 2, 2018 8:08 PM 12
a new plant experiment by needrain May 12, 2017 8:15 PM 6
An open palette by drdawg Jun 22, 2016 9:41 AM 26
Let's see what else we're growing, 2016 by dyzzypyxxy Jan 1, 2017 4:46 PM 1,398
Florida Garden - Fall and Winter 2015 by GigiPlumeria Jan 25, 2016 6:54 AM 174
Texas Weather! by Horntoad Dec 16, 2018 1:10 PM 2,858

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