Kids Project: Growing air plants

Air plants are a wonderful way to show children how plants can grow without soil. Tillandsia, or air plants, are plants that can grow not only without soil, but by actually being suspended in the air. In this project young children can create a hanging display of air plants and watch them grow.

air 1


Selection of air plants

Nylon fishing line




1. There are many different varieties if air plants and you can make shopping for air plants a really exciting and new adventure for your children. They will discover a variety of never-before-seen plants. You can use Google to search for air plants (Tillandsia) online to find your nearest supplier.

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2. With a few plants in hand, pick a nice spot to hang the display of air plants. The plants shouldn't be hung in direct sunlight, so select a shady spot with dappled sunlight to prevent the plants from drying out.

3.  Cut a long length of fishing line that is about half a metre (50 centimetres) long. Rather have the line too long than too short!

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4. At one end of the fishing line make a loop to hang your air plant strip. Make more loops all the way down the length of fishing line, spaced at about 20 to 30 centimetres apart. Because not all air plants are the same size, make sure that the gap is large enough for the plants you want to hang.



If you have a selection of small and large air plants, ensure the biggest is at the bottom and then to measure your gaps according to the height of the plants instead of making them all equal.


5. Before adding the plants, tie the fishing line onto the branch or surface to avoid a tangled mess. Carefully insert the first air plant into the bottom loop to give it some weight and then let the children have fun putting in the rest of the plants.


Air plants take their nutrients from the air, so looking after them is easy. All they need is a light misting of water with a spray bottle every now and again.


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