Syn.: Anoplophytum setaceum Beer, Platystachys setacea Beer, Tillandsia buchii Urb., Tillandsia fasciculata var. venosispica Mez, Tillandsia jaliscomonticola Matuda
Family: Bromeliaceae Juss.

Tillandsia compressa

Distribution: Western Mexico (mainly in the state of Jalisco), going south through Central America and West Indies to Colombia.

Ecology: Epiphyte growing high in the trees. Blooms in spring on mature plants only.

Description: Monocarpic, epiphytic, acaulescent, dense rosette of leaves; leaves numerous, lanceaolate-linear, subulate at base, rigidly erect, finely lepidote, 3 cm wide at base, 25–35 cm long. Inflorescence is spike, flat compressed, large, 5–6 cm wide, 20–25 cm long, simple, double or multiple, scape bracts crowded, with long rigid convoluted tips, pink-purplish; flower bracts ovate, reddish-yellow, 3 cm long, broad low down, rigid, thinly lepidote; calyx nearly as long as the bract, petals long, narrow, white with bluish tips, shorter than stamens. Fruit is a dry capsule containing seeds with pappi.

Notes: Although T. compressa is a valid name, T. jaliscomonticola, found in the mountains of Jalisco state, has the spike with the blunt top in comparison with nominate T. compressa. This plant with its distinctive spike is stylized in the logo of Puerto Vallarta Botanical Garden.

Tillandsia compressa
Tillandsia compressaTillandsia compressa
Tillandsia compressa

These images were taken in Mexico, Puerto Vallarta (October 2008).