Caput-Medusae Air Plant

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Availability : Out of Stock
  • Easy Care
  • Light Preference/Tolerated (Bright Indirect Light)
  • Above Average Watering Needs
  • Mature Height 5-6 inches
  • Pet Safe

Caput-Medusae is a unique-looking, flowering air plant and one of the most popular of the genus Tillandsia. They are part of the family of plants known as epiphytes, which anchor themselves to other plants. Their natural habitat is Central America and Mexico where you’ll find them growing on tree branches, rocks, or any surface that isn’t planted in soil. This allows them to get filtered sunlight from the tree canopy while their raised fuzzy hair or scale-like structures on their leaves absorb nutrients, humidity, and organic material from the environment–not from their roots. Caput-Medusae will tolerate a range of conditions and still thrive. 

Best Locations For Growing Caput-Medusae Air Plant

This plant is best grown in a warm location mimicking either a greenhouse environment or its natural tropical habitat. Provide plenty of bright indirect light, high humidity, and temperatures above 60 degrees, ideally between 65 to 86 degrees F to encourage flowering. Your air plant is versatile and can be mounted on a large tree branch, a piece of wood, a rock, or a specialty display. 

Caput-Medusae Air Plant Sunlight Requirements

Caput-Medusae loves bright light. Grow it in plenty of bright ambient sunlight, but avoid direct sunlight as it can scorch the plant's leaves. 

Caput-Medusae Air Plant Care

Air plants love warm, humid environments and appreciate adequate airflow. Moderate to high temperatures help this air plant to flower. Provide a good soaking a few times a month on top of regular misting.  

Watering Caput-Medusae Air Plant

Using rainwater or room-temperature filtered water is ideal. If you only have tap water, set a bowl of tap water out for 24 hours so some of the chlorine and other chemicals can dissipate.  Mist your air plant with a sprayer frequently, sometimes daily during the summer or dry months. Look closely at the leaves: if they have started to shrivel or curl, the plant needs moisture. 

Give your air plant a deep soak about once a week, fully submerging the plant for about 20 minutes. Then very gently shake out the excess water and place your air plant upside down on a towel and allow it to air dry for a few hours before returning to its designated spot. Be careful not to let water collect in the bottom leaves as this may cause rot. If you live in a particularly dry area, a once-a-week deep soaking followed by regular misting will keep your air plant healthy and happy. 

Feeding Caput-Medusae Air Plant

You can add a diluted fertilizer when watering once a month during the spring and summer months. Air plants are sensitive to strong fertilizers, so using a weak fertilizer is best. We recommend a basic bromeliad or orchid fertilizer that promotes bloom.

Caput-Medusae Air Plant Information

Light Exposure: Bright Indirect Light
Care Requirements: Easy
Watering Requirements: Above Average - Water-loving. Mist 3-4 times a week or soak twice a week.
Pet Friendly: Yes
Kid Friendly: Yes
Air Purifier: High
Habit: Upright
Growth Rate: Fast
Mature Height: 5-6 inches
Mature Spread: 5-6 inches
Flowering: Yes
Flower Color(s): Purple, Red
Flower Shade/Description: Violet, Red
Foliage Type:
Foliage Color(s): Green, Silver
Foliage Description: Green, Silver
Temperature: 73° - 82°F (23° - 28°C)
Humidity: High
Common Name: Caput-Medusae Air Plant
Other Name(s): Octopus Plant, Medusa's Head
Scientific Name: Tillandsia caput-medusae
Plant Type: House Plant

Container Sizes

Please Note: The pictures below are to give a general representation of the different container sizes. The actual size/ages of plants are estimates and will vary based on; type of plant, time of year, last pruning & many other factors.

4.5 Pot

4.5" Pot
 Also Know As:
   4.5" Container

 Plant Age:
   ~ 6 months
 Plant Size:
   ~ 3"-6"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 4.5"H x 3.75"W
   1.42 quarts

Quart Pot

Quart Pot
 Also Know As:

 Plant Age:
   ~ 1 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 4"-8"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 4.75"H x 4.5"W
   1.50 quarts

2.5 Quart

2.5 Quart
 Also Know As:
   2.5 Quart Pot

 Plant Age:
   ~ 1.5 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 8"-12"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 6.5"H x 6.5"W
   2.20-2.30 quarts

#1 Pot

#1 Pot
 Also Know As:
   #1 Container
    1 Gallon
 Plant Age:
   ~ 2 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 10"-14"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 7"H x 7.75"W
   2.26-3.73 quarts

#2 Pot

#2 Pot
 Also Know As:
   #2 Container
    2 Gallon
 Plant Age:
   ~ 2-3 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 12"-18"
 Pot Size:
   ~ 9.5"H x 9.5"W
   1.19-1.76 gallons

#3 Pot

#3 Pot
 Also Know As:
   #3 Container
    3 Gallon
 Plant Age:
   ~ 3-4 year old
 Plant Size:
   ~ 12"-30"
 Pot Size:
   ~9.5"H x 11"W
   2.32-2.76 gallons

For more detailed information, please click here.

Plant Addict Guarantee (Included On All Plant Orders)

Plant Addicts guarantees your plant(s) will arrive happy and healthy, but the plant(s) are being shipped through the mail and accidents happen. If the plant is dead, has dried out roots or the incorrect item was shipped just notify Plant Addicts within 3 days upon delivery. We may ask for pictures but will try to make it as easy as possible for you. Please note plant(s) with damaged branches or wilted leaves will not qualify for this guarantee. Plants are very resilient and will rebound quickly when cared for correctly.

For information on how to care for you new plant please check out our guide. Guide: How to Care for Your New Plant(s)

Plant Addicts Warranty - 1 Year (Extra Purchase Required)

We encourage all plant lovers to purchase the Plant Addicts Warranty whether you’re new or an expert. There are many variables outside our control and yours that can cause the demise of your plant(s). Examples would be hungry animals, drought, poor soil conditions, over watering, disease, insects & many other factors. The Plant Addicts Warranty is a 1 year warranty protecting you from all the unknowns and will replace your plant if it moves on to the plant afterlife.

The warranty is purchased on a per plant basis and must be purchased at the same time as the plant purchase. We will cover 100% of the price of the plant but the warranty does not cover shipping cost. Simply let us know if your plant has died within one year of receiving it and we’ll get you a new one shipped out. We may ask for photos for documentation purposes but again we’ll try to make it as easy as possible.

For more information, please go to our Shipping & Returns page at the bottom of the website.

Guide: How to Care for Your New Plant(s)

Planter Shipping

Standard Colors: 2-3 business days

Special Order Colors: 8 weeks - this is due to the planter being custom made with the color(s) of your choice

Please Note: On special orders there can not be any cancellations

Plant Shipping

Time of Order:

Summer Shipping

  • If there is extreme heat we’ll delay shipping.  
    • We’ll have to review what areas the plants are traveling through along with your location

Once your plant is shipped you’ll receive an email with tracking information. Depending on the above criteria we’ll ship your plant(s) towards beginning of the following week from your order. We put together this helpful guide of what to do when you receive your plants in the mail.

It is important to know that all of our plants are clearly labeled for which growing zones the plant can survive in. The plants are thoroughly trialed and tested in every growing zone before we state the plant can grow in a zone. Again, our #1 priority is to ship the plants to you healthy and ready to thrive in your location. So we will do everything in our power to do so.