Spiderworts are low-maintenance plants that can provide you with plenty of flowers to embellish your indoor space. They could feature leaves that are stunningly multi-colored or in soothing tones of simple green.
If you are looking to add lots of greenery to your house easily and quickly without much hassle, the houseplants listed here are great plant companions since they’re fast-growing and are native to tropical climates.
They have proven to have great benefits for me.
A vertically-oriented close-up image of the succulent and striped leaf of Tradescantia zibrina set against an unlit black background. There’s a printed portion of text in white and green at the bottom and in the middle of the frame.
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My home was like something from an adventure book since there were always plants everywhere you were. While I was in the house, I felt so pampered to be enveloped by all that lush greenery all around me.
However, I then made the choice to travel overseas, and that meant that every plant in my home was required to find an appropriate place to call home.
After living in Europe for a few years, I decided to begin cultivating an indoor garden following my move back to the United States.
The spiderworts are an important element of this project. About half a year ago, I bought two tiny containers of T. Zebrina.
The two pots have been transformed into four houseplants of medium size thanks to a simple propagation process as well as rapid growth. Additionally, I’ve recently started two more tiny specimens of cuttings, which means that the total number of plants is now six.
A vertically-oriented close-up of a small spiderwort plant which is sitting in a pot on a table made of wood.
Kristina Haicks Hamblin, the photographer for this photo.
There’s no other houseplant that can grow as fast and is as easy to propagate as this one; can you think of any?
(Please inform me in the comments section if you have the ability to! I’m looking for someone to befriend.
I’ll share with you the best ways to keep them looking beautiful while, at the same time, the inch plants can continue to provide our homes with new leaves. Also, although the spiderwort species are quite flexible, they do have their own preferred routines for care.
A Concise Guide to Planting and Growing
This article will concentrate on caring for and growing the variety of tropical species that are typically kept as house plants. Although some spiderworts can be planted outside as perennials in zones with temperate climates The article will focus on the care and growth of tropical species.
Cultivation and Historical Background
There is a possibility to choose either or both “trad-es-KAN-tee-uh” or “trad-es-KAN-shuh” when talking about the genus Tradescantia, which is popularly referred to in the context of “spiderwort.”
Tradescantia is classified as a genus within the family of Commelinaceae, which is also called the dayflower or spiderwort family. This family’s name comes because many of the species in this family are flowering and are only blooming for one day.
You might also be familiar with other members of the family, like the Tahitian wedding veil (Gibasis geniculate) and the Asiatic dayflower (Commelina communis).
There are 75 species of plants that are part of the genus Tradescantia. The majority of them display a “wandering” or vining growth behavior.
The species is indigenous to the Americas and is all over the continent, all the way from Canada to the north, all the way to Argentina to the south.
A horizontal and up-close photo of a single rose against a background is not in focus The flower is surrounded by dark green foliage.
In honor of their names, Carl Linnaeus, known as the “Father of Taxonomy,” granted the names John Tradescant the Elder and his son, John Tradescant the Younger, to the genus of plants Tradescantia in honor of their names.
Both men were gardeners, naturalists, and explorators from England, and the king, Charles I of Britain, employed them as landscape designers on his property.
It is possible to find two different stories of the way this father-son couple came to be linked to the genus that has their names.
T. virginiana was supposedly transported by Tradescant the Elder as a sample of an exploration to the Americas that he planned. According to one version of the story,
The other account claims the following: Tradescant, who was younger, was the one who gathered the data while he traveled through Virginia in 1629, and later returned it to England.
Whatever is the truth regarding the reasons for the introduction of this perennial plant, which thrives in an area with a mild climate in England The species, along with other species belonging to the genus Tradescant, were given the family name.
A horizontal close-up close-up view of a pile of tiny blue flowers blooming within the gardens.
T. virginiana is sometimes called Virginia spiderwort , or simply spider lily.
This genus is home to a huge variety of species native to the United States, including T. virginiana. However, the species cultivated as houseplants are primarily from areas of tropical Central as well as South America.
In their natural surroundings and also in areas that have been naturalized, they thrive in humid soils that are found in wooded areas, forests, and areas of riparian zones.
These delicate evergreen plants are characterized by a pattern of growth that is spreading, producing large mats of foliage and are capable of rooting into soil through their vines, especially at the leaf nodes. They have a habit of spreading that creates dense mats of plant life.
The sprawling growth pattern results in lengthy, trailing vines once the plants are moved inside to be used as house plants.
A horizontal close-up of various varieties of Tradescantia thriving outside in wooden pots.
There are many species and cultivars of Tradescantia, which include the silvery-inch plant (T. zebrina), “Burgundy,” and the tiny-leaf spiderwort (T. fluminensis).
Leaves of the species are alternate and may be oval, elliptical, or strap-like in appearance. Certain species exhibit a mottled appearance, while others sport uniform coloration of purple or green throughout their bodies.
The leaves of spiderwort are fleshy and have a texture that is similar to succulent leaves. Similar to how succulents are fleshy, so too are spiderwort’s leaves, which means they have the capacity to hold water.
Spiderworts are distinguished by the fine hairs on their stems and their leaves, and some species have more hairs than other species. The hairs, similar to those found on the tomato plant’s stems, can develop into roots when the spiderwort grows.
Three petals of flowers and a small size appear at the ends of the stems. The cultivar, or species, is the determining factor for the color of these delicate blooms, which could be white, pink, blue, purple, or.
An up-close , horizontal image of a leaf of a plant with a tiny blue flower, set against a background that is out of focus.
The Flower of T. Z.
You may be more familiar with “wandering Jew,” which is a different name for the houseplant.
As far as this writer and the paper are concerned, the commonly used moniker is no more acceptable. We’ve stopped using this old phrase because it has a lot of bad connotations.
Are you interested in knowing the reason?
In the past, the term “wandering Jew” referred to an individual from folklore or one who was a Jewish person who had insulted Jesus (who was, as I’d like to remind you, he was also Jewish) on his journey to be executed. The man who was in the picture is an errand-taking Jew.
In the tale, the man was sentenced to wander around the planet until the return of Jesus to be punished for the teasing he had done to others.
Be aware that the story you’re reading is only an account of a story. Even if it were an actual biblical tale, because the earliest reports of this mythological figure are from the sixth century.
The mythological figure of “the wandering Jew” has been the subject of stories for a long time. While many of these tales have a negative meaning The legend is based on negative stereotypes concerning Jews.
To compound the situation, Nazi propagandists appropriated the image in the 1930s in order to portray Jews in a negative light as part of their reason for the Holocaust. It made things more tense.
I’m sure you’ll be able to agree with me that this isn’t an ideal connection to confer on this houseplant and is not an image we wish to keep in any way, shape, size, or shape.
The positive side is that the plant has an amazing new name, which is extremely chilling and is often referred to in the form of “wandering man.” The new name seems to be suitable for an easy-care indoor plant, according to me.
On a red background is shown a close-up, vertical image of a plastic hanging basket, with the leaves of spiderwort sprinkling over the edges of the container.
Kristina Haicks Hamblin, the photographer for this photo.
The capacity that this species has to grow these extremely long vines appears to suggest that it is that the “wandering” component of its popular name is apt. This species is also referred to as “wandering Willie,” which is a different name. You could also refer to it as “wandering trad,” or “wandering trad,” as the natives of Australia used to call it.
The fabled name “spiderwort” most likely originated from the “web-like threads” that emerge from the sap of the plant. They become solid after the stems are cut According to Richard G. Hawks, who is the Plant Evaluations Manager at the Chicago Botanic Garden,
Another common name for the species is “inch plant,” which refers to the number of inches between the leaves.Another reason for naming this plant is that it seems to grow by an inch each day.
A horizontal and vertical close-up photo of the Tradescantia Zebrina plant climbing up the wall of a salmon-colored
Because they grow so quickly and quickly, they are great house plants for those who want to cover a large part of their property with greenery.
An Important Word of Caution:
If you are susceptible to reactions on the skin, some Tradescantia species, which are commonly utilized as houseplants, have been found to cause contact dermatitis. If you’re one of those people, then be sure to wear protective gloves every time you work with the plants.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty and Abuse of Animals (ASPCA) is unable to provide specific safety guidelines for each species of Tradescantia. However, T. fluminensis has been identified as being dangerous to dogs and cats alike.
However, when you examine the animal in question by looking through “Small Animal Toxicology,” the 3rd Edition of “Small Animal Toxicology,” which is available on Amazon, you’ll be able to see the world from a different angle.
The authors of this reference book, Michael E. Peterson, DVM, along with Patricia A. Talcott, DVM, are able to classify the species of the Tradescantia family in the category of “potential pet-friendly alternatives,” which implies that there is no “incriminating” data against these species that has been uncovered. The assertion is made within this book’s context.
If you have young children or pets, it’s essential to keep certain plants away from the reach of children or dogs. It is necessary for security. Think about choosing a houseplant that is non-toxic if you are worried about the safety of your children or pets that are always getting into trouble.
The species that is chosen and the type, depending on the species, Tradescantia can be grown outdoors as perennials or annuals within USDA hardiness zones 7b–12a, where they are also planted as houseplants. These zones are regulated as such by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
But, before you decide on one of the spiderwort varieties to cover your ground, you should be aware that they could be extremely invading. This is something to be aware of prior to making a decision.
A close-up horizontal image of a small terra-cotta planter with dark green leaves of spiderwort spilling out over the edges while the background blurs.
They should be relegated to the category of houseplants, so you can monitor them and make sure that they don’t cause trouble.
If you wish to plant them outside, ensure that you limit them to a safe distance by adding them to your garden container as additional plants.
Cuttings are the most simple and effective method to propagate the idea of dudes who wander around.
The process of propagating inch plants using cuttings is a simple procedure.
This kind of propagation doesn’t require any level of knowledge or prior knowledge, which makes it perfect for beginners, children, and everyone with little or no green thumbs.
A horizontally oriented small container that contains roots and cuttings is laid on the surface of a tree.
Kristina Haicks Hamblin, the photographer behind this photo,
You can choose to take the cuttings and allow them to grow in the water in a glass, or simply put your cuttings that have not yet established themselves into a pot that has soil for houseplants, which is made.
Read our guide on the spread of spiderwort if you’re looking for instructions step-by-step for the process of propagating wandering dwarf through cuttings.
How to Develop
Because they are easy to maintain and grow, spiderworts are an excellent choice for those who are just beginning their journey in the field of indoor gardening.
I’m going to give you some suggestions on how you can maintain these beautiful tropical plants to ensure that you’re able to provide them with the perfect conditions to thrive. I hope that you’ll find them useful.
These general guidelines apply to the vast majority of the species of Tradescantia that are planted as house plants. However, it is important to ensure that you check specific growth information for the species you are considering because there are likely to be subtle differences in the requirements they have.
Pick out a Phytonutrient-Rich Plant
If you are looking after your houseplants, it is important to start with a healthy plant that is in good condition.
A close-up and a horizontal photo depicting rows of hanging baskets in the greenhouse, each one carrying a spiderwort and shown against a background blurred.
To avoid being disappointed by the result of your endeavor to cultivate spiderwort, here are a few steps you can take to ensure that you start by cultivating a healthy and vigorous plant.
It is recommended to steer away from plants that have yellow or brown leaves in large numbers However, the presence of some brown leaves is normal.
If you purchase spiderworts on the internet in winter, be sure that they arrive with a heating pack (or at least two) to avoid harm from cooling while being transported.
Remember that plants with a diameter of an inch wide will swiftly grow to their maximum size, so make sure you select the right size to meet your needs.
It is best not to buy specimens that show signs of illness or pests.
In the next section, which is dedicated to managing pests and diseases You will find additional details about the signs of an infection or infestation that you must look for in spiderwort.
Spiderworts can adapt to a variety of conditions that are growing, including the amount of light the plants are subjected to.
They can be adjusted to lighting levels ranging between direct sun and a moderate degree of light.
However, if they had an input into the decision, tropical plants would like to grow in indirect, warm sunlight.
The image shows the tiny pink flowers of the Tradescantia palelida that are growing in a tiny pot on a windowsill. It is depicted in a close-up, vertical arrangement with the background blurred.
Personally, I’ve achieved success in cultivating T. zebrina in both direct sunlight on the south-facing side of my home and indirect sunlight on the north corner of my home. Both sides of my home are south-facing.
While my spiderworts have developed faster when exposed to full sunlight, they do not seem to be experiencing any negative effects because of being exposed to the northeast.
If you’re not getting a lot of light from the sun, either due to the direction of your home or due to living in an area with many overcast days, such as that of the Pacific Northwest, you might consider getting an increase in light to complement the lighting you have.