Flora of the Southeastern United States
2022 Edition

Colors

Data mode

Key to Tillandsia

1 Leaves distichous; inflorescence 1-2 (-3) flowered; [subgenus Diaphoranthema].
..2 Plants in dense, more or less spherical clusters; inflorescence scapose, exserted from the cluster, of (1-) 2 (-3) flowers; corolla violet
..2 Plants in elongate, pendulous festoons; inflorescence sessile, of a single flower; corolla yellowish green
1 Leaves spiral in a rosette; inflorescence (3-) many-flowered; [subgenus Tillandsia].
....3 Leaves narrowly linear, 1-5 mm wide (-10 mm wide in T. floridana) when measured at mid-length.
......4 Leaf sheaths conspicuously inflated at the base, 1.5-3.5 cm wide at base, the plant pseudobulbous; scapes < 6 cm long.
........5 Inflorescence linear to narrowly elliptic in outline; base of floral bracts visible at anthesis
........5 Inflorescence broadly elliptic in outline; base of floral bracts not visible at anthesis
......4 Leaf sheaths slightly or not at all inflated, the plant not pseudobulbous; scapes 8-39 cm long.
..........6 Leaf sheaths narrowly elliptic, slightly inflated, 1.2-2.0 cm wide
..........6 Leaf sheaths broadly elliptic to triangular, flat, 0.8-2.5 cm wide.
............7 Leaves finely lepidote, appearing green or reddish; floral bracts green or reddish, uniformly lepidote; corolla lavender
............7 Leaves densely and coarsely lepidote, appearing gray; floral bracts rose or red, becoming merely sparsely lepidote toward base; corolla violet.
..............8 Leaves 15-30, not over 0.5 cm wide at mid-length; inflorescence simple or 1-pinnate, with 1-5 branches
..............8 Leaves 20-50, 0.5-1.0 cm wide at mid-length; inflorescence 1-2-pinnate, with 2-10 branches
....3 Leaves broader, 6-35 mm wide when measured at mid-length.
................9 Leaf sheaths conspicuously inflated, the plant pseudobulbous (narrowed to a 'waist' upwards, above the base thickened by the inflated leaf sheaths).
..................10 Leaf blades and scape bracts twisted, reflexed
..................10 Leaf blades and scape bracts erect to spreading
................9 Leaf sheaths flat or slightly and broadly channeled, the plant not pseudobulbous (cylindrical or broadened-flaring upwards).
....................11 Floral bracts spreading and/or small, exposing most of the rachis at anthesis.
......................12 Leaves 10-20, spirally twisted, cross-banded green and silver; corolla pink
......................12 Leaves 20-75, not twisted, unicolored; corolla cream
....................11 Floral bracts imbricate, broad, covering all or most of the rachis (the rachis not visible at anthesis).
........................13 Leaves soft and brittle; inflorescence simple or with 1-3 branches; floral bracts 0.6-0.9 cm wide
........................13 Leaves tough and leathery; inflorescence palmately to pinnately branched, with 3-15 branches; floral bracts 1.2-2.0 cm wide.
..........................14 Fertile spikes of inflorescence > 10 cm long; floral bracts often 3.0-4.8 cm long
..........................14 Fertile spikes of inflorescence < 10 cm long; floral bracts 2-3 cm long.
............................15 Spikes of inflorescence with elongate slender sterile bases covered with sterile bracts
............................15 Spikes of inflorescence with short or absent sterile bases