Tillandsia nolleriana
Click thumbnails for full size, scaled to a new window.

Tillandsia nolleriana

Chris Larson 09/13
Chris Larson .... "A first flowering from me. This one looked to me to be a little temperamental, but it has survived its first winter out in the unheated greenhouse at home and has taken the cold quite well. On looking at the disc, this plant comes from around 1800m Oaxaca, Mexico so I need not have worried. I think it is more attractive in real life than these pictures seem to show."
Peter Tristram ...."Yes, not as easy as it looks and a very healthy specimen. Likes mild conditions so my January (and October!!) heat can knock it around. Like Chris I have 1 in bloom too. I keep them very shady over summer, like with cryptopoda, trigalensis, lautneri, mateoensis, nervata, kressii, of course multicaulis and other more common ones - there are a lot of these higher altitude species from those cool mountain forest areas and elsewhere in Mexico, Guatemala and further south."

Chris Larson 05/23
Chris Larson .... "This one has grown a little sideways - but still looking nice."

TILLANDSIA NOLLERIANA Ehlers. Trop Subtrop Pflanz. 58:29-32. 1986
T. chaetophyllae MEZ similis, sed ab ea differt characteribus sequentibus:
Planta stolonibus 6-8 cm longis. Vaginae foliorum pseudobulbum laxum formantes; bracteae scapi superiores tantum acutae, nec lamina filiformi; sepala posteriora tantum ad 5-6 mm alta connata. Stamina et stylus exserta.
Holotypus: R. Ehlers EM 8285 (martius 1982), in herb. inst. bot. system. univ. heidelb. (HEID).
Patria et distributio : inter Oaxaca et Puerto Escondido, prope summum transitus apud 1800 m.s.m. epiphytica in sylvis Pinis (Estado Oaxaca, Mexico meridionalis).

PLANT - Growing in dense clumps, with short, to 8cm long stolons covered by the sheaths of the basal leaves, flowering to 45cm high
LEAVES - Numerous, the bottom forming a lax pseudobulb.
LEAF SHEATH - Easily seen, to 1cm long, 1cm wide, both sides dark brown lepidote, edges strongly bent.
LEAF BLADE - Near the sheath 5mm wide, strongly canaliculate and brown scaled, narrowing to filiform, 1mm wide, to 35cm long, green both sides appressed lepidote.
SCAPE - Erect to ascending, thin, 15-25cm long, about 2mm diameter.
SCAPE BRACTS - The bottom ones leaflike, the upper with longer, greenish red nerved sheath and very short blade, longer than the internodes, gradually flowing over to the floral bracts.
INFLORESCENCE- Single spike, exceeding the leaves. Spike complanate, 4-10cm long, 1-1.5cm wide, 3-8 flowered. Rhachis not visible.
FLORAL BRACT - Erect, imbricate, lancelike-oval, acuminate, subcarinate, to 2.7cm long, 1.2cm wide, much longer than the sepals, membranous, red nerved, tip scattered lepidote.
SEPALS - Lancelike-acuminate, to 2.5cm long, 5mm wide, scattered lepidote, the posterior keeled and joined for 5-6mm.
PETALS - Thin-ligulate, erect, to 5cm long, violet-blue.
STAMENS - A little overhanging. Style much longer at post-anthesis.
HOLOTYPE R Ehlers EM 8285 ( March 1982) HEID
HABITAT- Between Oaxaca and Porto Escondido, in high passes, 1800m, epiphytically on pine trees, State Oaxaca, South MEXICO.

Differs from T. chaetophylla in
1 - Stolon 6-8cm long.
2 - Leaf sheath making a lax pseudobulb.
3 - Upper stem bracts tipped, not with filiform blade.
4 - Inflorescence exceeds the leaf.
5 - Posterior sepals joined for 5-6mm, carinate and weakly lepidote.
6 - Stamen and style overhanging.

T. nolleriana was collected many times, by Mr. Lautner, Gottingen (83/84) between Poschutla and Oaxaca, 1300 m, and cultivated in the Heidelberg botanical garden under the number B.G.H. 64 266; also by Rauh between Puerto Angel and Oaxaca near 800 m, (Rauh 52 564).

T. nolleriana resembles prefloral T. chaetophylla likewise from Mexico, however, postfloral it differs but is similar to T. tricolor Schlechtendal & Chamisso and T. punctulata Schlechtendal & Chamisso with its offsets at the base; and differs from T. chaetophylla whose stamens and style are enclosed (fig. 19a, also Fig. 237, p 766 in Smith and Downs, Tillandsioideae, in Flora Neotropica, Vol. 14/2). The flowers open (in cultivation) in the early afternoon and remain open for the next 2-3 days; with T. nolleriana the flowers open in the morning and are withered on the next day.

It is similar to T. ortgieiana E. Morr. but T. nolleriana differs in following characteristics:
Leaves green, only appressed lepidote. Sheaths broad. Spike much longer; floral bracts exceeding the sepals, which are very short connate and scattered lepidote.

Updated 10/05/23