Home Plants Tillandsia Eric Knobloch – T. Brachycaulos x T. Streptophylla

Tillandsia Eric Knobloch – T. Brachycaulos x T. Streptophylla

by gardeningit
Tillandsia Eric Knobloch

Tillandsia Eric Knobloch is a hybrid cultivar of the Tillandsia genus. It is an intriguing air plant that brings creativity to your home through its lime green droopy leaves. These mature leaves of this evergreen plant have a shade of rosy pink in their centers that add a splash of color to any indoor plant collection. It is an easy-to-care hybrid that looks great in every spot inside a home!

History and Classification

  • Family: Bromeliaceae
  • Subfamily: Tillandsioideae
  • Genus: Tillandsia

Tillandsia plant is a tropical hybrid cultivated through a cross between T. brachycaulos x T. streptophylla. It was cultivated in 1969 by a famous botanist, Joe Carrone, in New Orleans. This beautiful plant is endemic to South and Central America.

Tillandsia Eric Knobloch Appearance

Foliage

If you look at Eric Knobloch foliage, you will see two colors: lime green and pale red. Its new leaves are green in color that take on a reddish shade as they mature. The red leaves are mainly in the center.

The long leaves of this plant grow outward in curves and bend down towards the base. These leaves have tiny hairs on them that are actually the air roots. Each leaf is about 20 cm long.

Flower

This plant rarely blooms indoors, but when it blooms, it produces purple flowers. 5 to 6 flowers grow at a time in the center of this plant and then mature into pods.

Size

This Tillandsia hybrid grows as high as 3-5 inches indoors. Its foliage grows 5-7 inches wide. Its mature height and width remain the same regardless of the growing conditions; only its growth rate is affected if grown indoors.

Tillandsia Eric Knobloch Care

Quick Guide

  • Water: A bowl of water twice a week for 10 minutes.
  • Soil type and pH: No soil needed.
  • Sunlight: Bright, indirect sunlight.
  • Temperature: 10-26°C.
  • Humidity: 65% moderate humidity.
  • Fertilizer: Diluted fertilizer once a fortnight.

Let’s learn about these care requirements in detail.

Watering Requirement

Tillandsia Eric Knobloch is an air plant whose method of watering is a bit different than other regular houseplants. There are two ways in which you can water your Tillandsia plant, soaking and spraying.

This plant should be soaked in a bowl of water for about ten minutes twice a week. You must place the plant upside down on a table and let it dry after soaking it to prevent water from collecting in its crevices.

If you prefer misting over-soaking, you must give the plant a good spray four times a week. After misting it, shake off the excess water and let the plant dry. You should choose a method that seems easier to you.

Soil Requirement

Eric Knobloch does not have a proper root system; it drinks water or absorbs nutrients from its leaves. In their natural habitat, all air plants grow on other trees or rocks and not in soil.

This is why this hybrid air plant does not need soil or growing media. You can just put it in a jar or a mini hanging pot without any potting mix.

Sunlight

This reddish-green variegated air plant needs a good amount of bright sunlight to thrive. However, the sunlight must not reach directly to its leaves. Direct sunlight can cause sunburns and scorch marks on its long leaves. This is why it must never be placed on a windowsill.

The best place for this tropical hybrid is a spot 6 feet away from a south-facing window. You must not grow it in a blocked area where there is no air movement. You should grow all your air plants in a room where there is good airflow.

Temperature Requirement

As long as the surrounding temperature stays between 10°C and 26°C, Tillandsia Eric Knobloch stays happy. It prefers warmer surroundings. Too much heat or extreme cold can damage its lovely foliage. This is why this Tillandsia hybrid must be grown as an indoor plant, as it cannot tolerate the temperature fluctuations and temperature extremes of your outdoor home garden.

Protect the plant from chilly temperatures. You should move it to a greenhouse or a terrarium if the temperature drops below 4°C. In a greenhouse, the temperature stays in an average room temperature range.

Humidity

Just like its fellow species Tillandsia Fuchsii, Tillandsia Eric Knobloch prefers moderate humidity. All the Tillandsia air plants thrive in moderate humidity levels but can also tolerate low humidity. The ideal humidity for this plant is 65%.

It is still higher than the average humidity indoors. You should increase your indoor humidity by either installing a humidifier in a room or growing it in a group with other plants. Misting also increases humidity, but it also increases the chances of root rot if the plant is not dried right after.

Fertilizer

Air plants cannot absorb nutrients from the soil as they do not have a proper root system. In their natural habitat, these plants absorb any nutrients falling from the tree canopy above them. These nutrients are taken up by their leaves. This is the same way by which you will be fertilizing your Tillandsia Eric Knobloch at home.

Add two tablespoons of a low-nitrogen fertilizer to a bottle of water. Then soak your plant in this water for about 30 minutes. This plant should be fertilized once every two weeks in summers and once every month in winters.

Grooming and Pruning

There is no need to trim the foliage as it does not get a leggy appearance. However, dry and old leaves must be removed occasionally. Never forget to disinfect your gardening shears before using them on this plant.

How to Propagate Tillandsia Eric Knobloch

The method of propagation of Tillandsia Eric Knobloch is similar to the propagation of Tillandsia Xerographica. Both these air plants can be propagated through seeds and pups.

Best time for propagation

You should propagate this plant only in the months of active growth from early spring to early summers.

Propagation Through Seeds

You should wait for the plant to bloom and its pods to burst to get the seeds. You can also buy seeds from a store if your indoor plant is not blooming. However, we do not recommend this propagation method as it is time-consuming and takes practice to succeed.

Propagation Through Pups

This is the easiest method of propagation of any houseplant out there. There is no need to prepare a pot or a growing medium and no need to fertilize the plant at the time of propagation.

  1. Water your Tillandsia Eric Knobloch before the propagation process.
  2. Submerge it in a bowl of water for 10 minutes, shake off excess water and leave it upside down on a board to dry.
  3. Take a knife and sterilize it.
  4. Separate the leaves of the Tillandsia plant to reveal its base. You will notice three to six pups or offsets.
  5. Using the knife, remove the pups off the base of the mother plant.
  6. You can either mount these pups on a board or place them in a small jar.
  7. These baby plants require the same care routine as the mother plant.

Tillandsia Eric Knobloch Basic Features

Growth Rate

It is a fast-growing plant that vigorously grows when provided with the ideal conditions. When grown indoors, its growth slows down to half of its average growth rate. It can be grown in the plant hardiness growth zones of 9 to 13.

Toxicity

This elegant houseplant is pet-friendly and non-toxic. You should still keep your pets away from it to avoid any damage to its foliage.

Drought Tolerance

It is a hardy hybrid cultivar that can tolerate neglect to some extent. It is a drought-tolerant plant that can live without water for a long, long time.

Maintenance

We are happy to tell you that this beautiful hybrid with classy foliage is a low-maintenance plant. It just needs a basic care routine to survive and thrive. No special treatment!

Dormancy

If you do not water this air plant for an extended period, it goes dormant.  It stays in its resting stage until it is watered again. These days, it does not grow at all.

To revive your plant from its dormancy, you should soak it in a bowl of water for 5-6 hours for 2-3 consecutive days. Once it comes back to life and starts growing again, you can return to its regular watering schedule.

Tillandsia Eric Knobloch Common Problems

Here are some common diseases and pests of Tillandsia Eric Knobloch that can kill your plant:

Diseases

This plant can easily get root rot or fungus. If the humidity exceeds the required level or the plant is overwatered, it develops root rot. The dampness and moisture can eventually lead to the attack of a fungus.

Both diseases can be prevented by keeping the humidity in check, regulating its water schedule, and always drying the plant after watering. If your plant has already got root rot or a fungus growing inside its foliage, you must remove the affected parts immediately.

Pests

This plant can attract a pest attack through its old leaves. If your plant has dried or decaying leaves, there is a chance of getting attacked by mealybugs and scales. This is why you should prune the old leaves occasionally.

These pests can be removed from the plant by picking them up by hand or by rubbing the foliage with neem oil or insecticidal soap.

Frequently Asked Questions about Tillandsia Eric Knoblock

Why Does My Plant Have Black Leaves?

Black leaves are a sign of fungal growth. If you notice the leaves of your plant turning black, remove them ASAP to stop the spread of the fungal growth.

Why Is My Plant Wilting?

Wilting foliage or brown leaves signal that your plant is thirsty. These are the signs that you are under-watering your plant and must water it more often. On warmer days, you should water this air plant every other day.

Why Do the Leaves Have Sooty Substance on Them?

Ants produce soot when they live on plants. These ants are attracted by the honeydews produced by mealybugs. So the presence of a sooty substance on your plant indicates the presence of ants and eventually the presence of mealybugs. If you do not remove these two sap-sucking insects from your plant foliage, they will suck all the nutrients and kill this plant.

Why Is the Base of My Plant Turning Dark?

Overwatering is the answer. If you water your plant more than necessary or do not dry it after a good watering, its base will start to turn dark, its leaves will turn yellow, and start to fall down. In such a case, leave your plant dry for a week and do not water it these days.

Conclusion

Tillandsia Eric Knobloch is one of the prettiest cultivars of the Tillandsia genus. Its rosy-green leaves and curved foliage make it a great tabletop houseplant. It is a tropical evergreen hybrid that can be grown on vertical boards, hanging baskets, tabletops, or in small terrariums. If you wish to grow low-maintenance air plants in your home, this Tillandsia hybrid is your way to go.

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