|Tradescantia pallida subsp. var.||Wandering Jew, Purple Heart, Purple Queen|
Tradescantia pallida (syn. Setcreasea purpurea, Setcreasea pallida)is a species of spiderwort (a genus of New World plants) more commonly known as Wandering Jew, a name it shares with the closely related species T. fluminensis and T. zebrina. Other common names include Purple Heart and Purple Queen.
T. pallida can be primarily described as an evergreen perennial plant of scrambling stature native to the Gulf Coast region of Mexico. It is distinguished by elongated, pointed leaves - themselves glaucous green, fringed with red or purple - and bearing small, sterile three-petaled flowers of white, pink or purple.
Widely used as an ornamental plant in gardens and borders, as a ground cover, hanging plant, or - particularly in colder climates where it cannot survive the winter season - houseplant, it is propagated easily by cuttings (the stems are visibly segmented and roots will frequently grow from the joints). However, this very characteristic, in addition to the fact that it is remarkably shade-tolerant and can thrive in a wide range of soil conditions, makes T. pallida quite formidable should it be encountered in situations where it has not been intentionally cultivated and carefully maintained. In areas throughout the southern United States and Australia, it is considered an invasive weed and has defied many attempts at control or eradication.
Plants are top-killed by moderate frosts, but will often sprout back from roots. Protection by mulching will increase the chances of sprouting in marginal areas.
Grows easily from cuttings placed in moist soil or a glass of water.
Pests and diseases
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