Most species in this subfamily are epiphytic. They grow on rocks and fences, using them only for support, taking nothing from them (directly). Their leaves are not spined (unarmed) and their fruit is a dry capsule. According to the monography by Smith & Downs (1977), there are seven genera in this sub-family, Tillandsia, Vriesea, Guzmania, Catopsis, Mezobromelia and Glomeropitcairnia. Vriesea has been partly revised recently into three genera (Vriesea, Alcantarea and Werauhia) and Tillandsia into two genera (Tillandsia and Racinaea).

Tillandsia ionantha Alcantarea regina





Guzmania sanguinea

Guzmania claviformis 

Mezobromelia bicolor Vriesea gradata

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