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Spiderwort Tradescantia x andersoniana

Phonetic Spelling
trad-es-KAN-tee-uh an-der-soh-nee-ah
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

A hardy perennial, Tradescantia x andersoniana, or spiderwort is grown for its showy blooms and foliage.  It is the most common spiderwort in cultivation.  Many of this species have flowers that will open in the morning and close if subject to afternoon sunshine.  They may remain open for a longer period of time if the weather is cloudy, or until the evening.

The name spiderwort comes from the stem secretion that is produced when the stem is cut.  When it hardens, it becomes threadlike, and thought to resemble a spiders web.

Its leaves are strap-like and range from 12" to 18" long. The flowers are 3 parted, with spidery hairs on the stamens.

Spiderwort blooms for a long period through the summer. Deadheading spent flowers will extend the bloom period.  When planted in locations that experience hot summers, the foliage will decline and flowering can stop completely.  That is an excellent time to cut back hard.  Cutting to the ground will allow the plant to produce new foliage and even a late summer into fall bloom.

Cultivars with various heights, flower size and flower colors are available.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  Snails and caterpillars can damage young shoots.  Individual blooms last only one day.

The plant can become somewhat unattractive in the landscape in mid summer.  

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Alba Major'
    White flowers.
  • 'Bilberry Ice'
    Blue-purple or Lavender, 6-12" in height.
  • 'Blue and Gold'
    Blue-violet flowers, 18-24" in height. AKA 'Sweet Kate'.
  • 'Blue Stone'
    Blue-violet blooms.
  • 'Blushing Bride'
    pink flowers, 6-12" in height.
  • 'Carmine Glow'
    Pink-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Charlotte'
    Light purple flowers.
  • 'Concord Grape'
    Medium purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Hawaiian Punch'
    Bright red-purple flowers, height 12-18"
  • 'Innocence'
    White, off-white flowers, 18-24" in height. Larger flowers.
  • 'Iris Pritchard'
    White, off-white flowers, 18-24" in height.
  • 'J.C. Weguelin'
    Light blue-lavender flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Leonora'
    Violet-blue flowers, 18-24"
  • 'Little Doll'
    Miniature cultivar, light blue flowers, height 6-12".
  • 'Little White Doll'
    White flowers.
  • 'Osprey'
    Light blue 18-24" and White, off-white 24-36".
  • 'Pauline'
    Lavender flowers, 24-36" in height.
  • 'Perrine's Pink'
    Bright pink-purple flowers, height 12-18'.
  • 'Pink Chablis'
    Pink-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Purple Dome'
    Purple flowers, 6-12" tall.
  • 'Purple Profusion'
    Medium purple flowers, 6-12" in height.
  • 'Purple Rebel'
    Light purple flowers.
  • 'Red Cloud'
    Pink-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Red Grape'
    Reddish-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Rubra'
    Pink-purple to red-purple flowers, height 18-24".
  • 'Satin Doll'
    Miniature cultivar, pink-purple or red-purple flowers, height 6-12".
  • 'Snow Cap'
    White, off-white flowers, 18-24" in height.
  • 'Sweet Kate'
    Compact, clump-forming, purple/blue flowers.
  • 'Valor'
    Pink-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Zwanenberg Blue'
    Blue-Violet blooms, 6-12" tall
'Alba Major', 'Bilberry Ice', 'Blue and Gold', 'Blue Stone', 'Blushing Bride', 'Carmine Glow', 'Charlotte', 'Concord Grape', 'Hawaiian Punch', 'Innocence', 'Iris Pritchard', 'J.C. Weguelin', 'Leonora', 'Little Doll', 'Little White Doll', 'Osprey', 'Pauline', 'Perrine's Pink', 'Pink Chablis', 'Purple Dome', 'Purple Profusion', 'Purple Rebel', 'Red Cloud', 'Red Grape', 'Rubra', 'Satin Doll', 'Snow Cap', 'Sweet Kate', 'Valor', 'Zwanenberg Blue'
Tags:
#purple#poisonous#full sun tolerant#houseplant#perennials#violet#white flowers#pink flowers#herbaceous#summer flowers#trailing#herbaceous perennials#groundcover#self-seeding#spring interest#wildflower garden#leggy#wet soils tolerant#partial shade tolerant
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Alba Major'
    White flowers.
  • 'Bilberry Ice'
    Blue-purple or Lavender, 6-12" in height.
  • 'Blue and Gold'
    Blue-violet flowers, 18-24" in height. AKA 'Sweet Kate'.
  • 'Blue Stone'
    Blue-violet blooms.
  • 'Blushing Bride'
    pink flowers, 6-12" in height.
  • 'Carmine Glow'
    Pink-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Charlotte'
    Light purple flowers.
  • 'Concord Grape'
    Medium purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Hawaiian Punch'
    Bright red-purple flowers, height 12-18"
  • 'Innocence'
    White, off-white flowers, 18-24" in height. Larger flowers.
  • 'Iris Pritchard'
    White, off-white flowers, 18-24" in height.
  • 'J.C. Weguelin'
    Light blue-lavender flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Leonora'
    Violet-blue flowers, 18-24"
  • 'Little Doll'
    Miniature cultivar, light blue flowers, height 6-12".
  • 'Little White Doll'
    White flowers.
  • 'Osprey'
    Light blue 18-24" and White, off-white 24-36".
  • 'Pauline'
    Lavender flowers, 24-36" in height.
  • 'Perrine's Pink'
    Bright pink-purple flowers, height 12-18'.
  • 'Pink Chablis'
    Pink-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Purple Dome'
    Purple flowers, 6-12" tall.
  • 'Purple Profusion'
    Medium purple flowers, 6-12" in height.
  • 'Purple Rebel'
    Light purple flowers.
  • 'Red Cloud'
    Pink-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Red Grape'
    Reddish-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Rubra'
    Pink-purple to red-purple flowers, height 18-24".
  • 'Satin Doll'
    Miniature cultivar, pink-purple or red-purple flowers, height 6-12".
  • 'Snow Cap'
    White, off-white flowers, 18-24" in height.
  • 'Sweet Kate'
    Compact, clump-forming, purple/blue flowers.
  • 'Valor'
    Pink-purple flowers, height 12-18".
  • 'Zwanenberg Blue'
    Blue-Violet blooms, 6-12" tall
'Alba Major', 'Bilberry Ice', 'Blue and Gold', 'Blue Stone', 'Blushing Bride', 'Carmine Glow', 'Charlotte', 'Concord Grape', 'Hawaiian Punch', 'Innocence', 'Iris Pritchard', 'J.C. Weguelin', 'Leonora', 'Little Doll', 'Little White Doll', 'Osprey', 'Pauline', 'Perrine's Pink', 'Pink Chablis', 'Purple Dome', 'Purple Profusion', 'Purple Rebel', 'Red Cloud', 'Red Grape', 'Rubra', 'Satin Doll', 'Snow Cap', 'Sweet Kate', 'Valor', 'Zwanenberg Blue'
Tags:
#purple#poisonous#full sun tolerant#houseplant#perennials#violet#white flowers#pink flowers#herbaceous#summer flowers#trailing#herbaceous perennials#groundcover#self-seeding#spring interest#wildflower garden#leggy#wet soils tolerant#partial shade tolerant
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Tradescantia
    Family:
    Commelinaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    North, Central and South America
    Wildlife Value:
    Honey bees are attracted to the flowers.
    Play Value:
    Attracts Pollinators
    Defines Paths
    Easy to Grow
    Textural
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Ground Cover
    Houseplant
    Perennial
    Poisonous
    Wildflower
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Cascading
    Clumping
    Horizontal
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Wet
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Umbel
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Long Bloom Season
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Saucer
    Flower Petals:
    2-3 rays/petals
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Each flower only lasts one day. The 1" diameter, 3 petaled blooms
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Purple/Lavender
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Other/more complex
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Form:
    Straight
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Naturalized Area
    Near Septic
    Patio
    Pond
    Slope/Bank
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Rain Garden
    Rock Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Small groups
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Wet Soil
    Problems:
    Poisonous to Humans
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    Unknown
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Unknown
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Leaves