Thursday, February 14, 2013

A Flower For Valentine's Day

One of my Tillandsia caput medusae (Medusa's Head Tilly) decided to bloom a little early. I thought it made a nice, and rather unusual, Valentine's Day flower:

Tillandsia caput medusae in bloom, MR 2013
Caput medusaes can can be a little tricky, as they are very prone to rot at the base. They are densely fuzzy with trichomes and therefore retain a lot of water. The bottom leaf pouches must be drained after a good soak, because rot can form very quickly in them. The flower is lovely and reminds me of a bird-of-paradise.


  1. Thank you, Gail! It's certainly an uncommon flower for Feb 14.

  2. I think i have this variety. looks like i 'll have to watch my watering... thanks for the suggestion of draining the lower leaves. how often do you soak them?

  3. T. caput medusae is frequently sold in nurseries. It's a little ironic, because it's one of the more difficult species to keep alive! I give them a bucket soak for 10 min. twice a week in the cold months, and every other day in summer. After watering, I drain the leaves and check for any rot at the base. If it's not a bucket day, they get misted in the morning. Don't water at night, that's when they respire. Enjoy your Tillies!