Tillandsia tectorum is a species in the genus Tillandsia. It is native to Peru and Ecuador where it can be found growing in large populations on Andean cliff faces and outcroppings. It is a rare air plant to find.
The large, fuzzy trichomes and overall whimsical appearance appearance of Tillandsia tectorum have made it exceptionally popular among both air plant novices and enthusiasts. This plant's unique form is due the extreme conditions in its native Andean climate. In Peru, Tectorum is seen growing in rugged, arid regions alongside cacti and agave in full sun. Due to the exposure to such bright ultraviolet light, the plants have adapted with large trichomes to reflect the strong solar radiation. Due to the variability of climate and elevation (from 3,000 to 8,200 feet) in their native range, mature Tectorum air plants vary significantly in size. Their flowers are a gentle pink with tiny, violet bracts. The trichomes also serve to catch nutrients blowing in the wind in an otherwise low-nutrient environment. During the rainy season, the plants are subjected to bursts of heavy rain