1840, possibly via French aerophyte, from aero- + -phyte "plant."
plant that derives dampness and nutritional elements from environment and rainfall; usually expands on another plant not parasitic about it
- A plant developing completely floating around, and obtaining its nourishment from it; an environment plant or epiphyte.
(letter.) A plant developing entirely floating around, and obtaining its nourishment as a result; an air plant or epiphyte.