Díaz SV, España PC, Arango ICP, Zapata EV, Aparicio AR and Palacios AF
Tillandsia recurvata has anticancer properties as well as horticultural value. Production through seed germination is non-viable since the species produce low numbers of seeds with low viability, longevity and germination rates. We explored propagation using cuttings and tested different inert substrates and plant growth, regulators. In 2008, cuttings were taken from T. recurvata plants and sown in/on three different substrates (red lava rock, gravel and electricity cable) to which growth regulating cytokinins [6-Benzilaminopurine (BAP) and Kinetin (KIN)] were added. The effects of substrate and cytokinin addition were determined in terms of cutting survival and four different relative growth indices (length, weight, number of live leaves and the number of new leaves). Cutting weight, a number of new leaves and survival did not differ among the different substrate types and plant growth regulators. The cuttings sown on cable presented a higher quantity of live leaves. The cutting length was greater in the control or with the addition of KIN; the length was also greater when the cuttings were sown in red lava rock. The red lava rock and cable are both substrates with potential for propagation of T. recurvata; however, given the lack of differences found between the control and KIN treatments, the addition of these plant growth regulators appears to be unnecessary. We conclude that sowing cuttings in/on inert substrates constitute an inexpensive and easily implemented technique for propagation of this species.