Are air plants fun and exciting? Well, Tillandsia ‘Twisted Tim’ certainly is. This curly-leaved upright-growing hybrid has spades of character and really shows off when blooming.
How To Care For Tillandsia ‘Twisted Tim’
Tillandsia ‘Twisted Tim’ is often mistaken for Tillandsia ‘Curly Slim’ as they both share similar characteristics and are cultivated from Tillandsia Intermedia which is one of the parent species.
‘Curly Slim’ is, well, more curly and has darker green leaves, whereas ‘Twisted Tim’s leaves are lime-green, more relaxed, and graceful. Both hybrids require the same care and conditions.
Tillandsia ‘Twisted Tim’ is very easy to care for and does not have any special requirements. Position your plant close to a window so it receives bright but indirect sunlight and good air circulation.
Tillandsia Intermedia (one of the parent/origin species) grows upside down in nature so you can mount or hang your hybrid any way you like, even sideways, and it will still thrive.
How To Water Tillandsia ‘Twisted Tim’
‘Twisted Tim’ is very easy to water and does not require misting. Soak your plant once a week for about 20-30 minutes in a bowl of water or the kitchen sink to keep your plant hydrated. I use rain or soft tap water, both are absolutely fine.
‘Curly Slim’ and ‘Twisted Tim’ owners like to experiment with watering and often dehydrate their plants deliberately to encourage and accentuate the leaf’s curls. The more dehydrated the plant gets the more curly the leaves become.
It’s always a good idea to turn your plants upside down for a few hours after soaking to help prevent rotting. If you’re like me and hang ‘Twisted Tim’ from garden or tilly wire in a sideways or upside-down position your plants should be fine anyway.
How To Propagate Tillandsia ‘Twisted Tim’
‘Twisted Tim’ is viviparous in nature, meaning it can produce pups/offsets on the inflorescence as well as around the base of the plant. The flower spike may produce multiple pups along its length which is unusual for air plants.
You can of course grow new plants from seed. However, most air plant gardeners wait until the mother plant produces tiny babies/clones known as pups or offsets.
Removing the pups from the inflorescence is easy but it can be more difficult when removing the pups from the base of the plant where there often concealed by leaves.
Hold the leaves out of the way with one hand and use the other hand to gently twist and pull the pups away from the parent plant. Water the pups immediately and then care for them in the same way as mature plants.
Flowers And Expert Tips
Stand back, Tillandsia ‘Twisted Tim’ is stunning when in bloom. The central stalk and flower spikes turn a beautiful pastel peachy color followed by tall and erect tubular purple flowers.
Some plants blush redder in color than pastel pink. Either way, I have to say, even if you’re not as enthusiastic about air plants as me, you will be stopped in your tracks by this incredible hybrid if you notice one in full bloom.
To encourage flowering, you should feed your air plants once every 2 weeks with a specialist fertilizer such as a Bromeliad or Orchid feed, or a type of Seaweed extract.
Tillandsia ‘Twisted Tim’ Parent Plants
Tillandsia ‘Twisted Tim’ is a cultivar of intermedia x capitata by Frank Messina of Tillandsia International.
As I said above, ‘Twisted Tim’ is often mistaken for its close cousin ‘Curly Slim’ (intermedia x streptophylla) as they both share similar characteristics.
Also, keep an eye open for the wonderful ‘Twisted Tim’ x ‘Curly Slim’ hybrid which looks predominantly like the latter but with thinner and softer leaves.
- Pollen parent – Unknown
- Seed parent – Unknown.
Drop me an email if you know which way around the pollen and seed parents are, thanks.