The Best Water For Air Plants + Useful Watering Tips

There isn’t one type categorized as the best water for air plants, but using water from specific sources is better for them than others. 

Air plants are hardy and low maintenance. You can grow them indoors and out to add to your home or yard aesthetics and keep the air you breathe cleaner! While most air plants can adapt to growing in soil, they don’t need it. 

In this article, I explain why air plants still need water, list the best water sources, and share watering tips to help keep your air plants healthy.

Why Do Air Plants Need Water? Best Water For Air Plants

Air plants don’t need soil to grow because they live off the nutrients they get from the air around them. Although air replaces the nutrient source, these plants still need water. 

Most air plants can survive in slightly dry conditions, but they’ll die if you completely forget to water them. Humidity is essential for air plants. If you place them in an arid area, you’ll need to water them manually. Without water, your plants won’t grow and be healthy.

Photosynthesis can’t occur if you don’t give your plant water or expose it to enough sunlight. Seeds also need water and sunlight to germinate, or you won’t have any plants at all!

Why Do Air Plants Need Water

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The Best Water For Air Plants

#1 Rain Water

In their natural habitat, air plants thrive in the rain. They depend on regular rainfall to keep them alive. Rainwater is the healthiest and most natural source of water you can give your plant. You can use your gutter system or a regular container to collect water when it rains. 

If you live in an area that doesn’t get much rain, you can mix the little you manage to catch with regular tap water. 

#2 Natural Water Sources – Best Water For Air Plants

Another good option is natural water sources. You should look for nearby water sources if you live in a dry region with little to no rainfall. There are many different natural water sources that are better for air plants than regular tap water is. This includes dams, rivers, creeks, wells, and ponds. 

If you live near a river or dam, you can collect water in containers to water your air plants. Spring water is almost as nutrient-rich as rainwater, making it an excellent option too! Any other natural water sources except saltwater can be beneficial to your air plants. 

#3 Aquarium Water

Water from your fish’s house can give your air plants a lot of nutrients. You can take some water from your aquarium and use this to water your air plant.

Some fish aren’t into sharing and losing their water. You can entertain them by soaking your plant directly in their aquarium. Just ensure the plant isn’t toxic to your fish. 

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Best Water For Air Plants

Tips For Watering Air Plants

Soak Your Air Plants In Water

The best way to water air plants is by submerging them in water. Simply stick your plants in a water bowl and leave them there for about an hour. This will ensure they suck up enough water to get nutrients. 

You can leave them to air dry afterward. Place your plants in a sunny spot so their roots will dry completely. Wet roots could lead to root rot. 

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Never Use Distilled Water

Contrary to what most people think, distilled water isn’t healthy for air plants! In fact, this water can suck nutrients from your plants. 

Since this water is pure and doesn’t contain many nutrients, it can’t feed your plants. The little minerals in your air plants will soak into the water and not replenish. 

Stick To A Schedule – Best Water For Air Plants

Create a watering schedule and stick to it. Choose one day during the week when you know you won’t forget to water your air plants. 

Use this day to soak your plants and let them air dry. It’s essential to not forget your plants in the water or sun. Too much water could rot your air plant, while extended sunlight exposure could burn them. 

Mist Your Air Plants

If your air plant has a flower, it would be best to just spray it with some water instead of completely dunking it in water. You can spray the stem, roots, and leaves with a misting bottle.

Misting is not as effective as soaking air plants. Depending on your plant’s needs, you may need to do this 3 to 7 times a week.

To Sum It Up, Best Water For Air Plants

There are many air plants, including ferns, bromeliads, and cacti. Whichever you choose, they’ll require minimum effort and bring life to your living spaces!

If you ensure your air plants get enough light, have the right temperature and humidity balance, and get sufficient nutrients through water, they’ll thrive. You don’t have to do much to keep these plants alive, and green fingers aren’t a requirement.

I hope you enjoyed reading this article and that you gained the insight you needed. If you have more questions about what works best for air plants, ask them in the comments!


Do air plants need special water?

Air plants don't need special water, but some types of water offer more benefits than others. Since these plants don't get nutrients from soil, watering them with nutrient-rich water sources will help them stay healthier.

What is the best way to water an air plant?

You can mist or soak air plants. Soaking is the best way to ensure your plants have enough time to consume nutrients from the water, but misting them three or four times a week can also work.

Should I use distilled water for air plants?

It's best to not use distilled water for air plants. This water contains fewer nutrients than other sources and won't feed your air plants what they need.

Is tap water okay for air plants?

Most tap water is okay for air plants, but water from natural sources is best. This liquid could damage your plants depending on the cleaners used in your area's tap water.