This plant has an attractive appearance and an even more intriguing name! The Tradescantia Pallida is also known as the Purple Heart Wandering Jew. Its foliage expresses a brilliant shade of purple, described as a luscious blend between Russian Violet and Amethyst. With its smooth velvety texture, it is sure to leave a plant collector entranced!
The Tradescantia Pallida is a descendant of the Spiderwort genus of plants originating from South and Central America. You can find these babies abundant in regions of Eastern Mexico.
Pallida has segmented stems, a factor that influences its growth positively. It houses the most lovely pink or purple flowers that are small, timid, and attractive. However, it’s the foliage that drives the plant fanatics crazy about it.
If you’re thinking about including it in your house collection of plants, do not hesitate because Tradescantia Pallida is a very easy-going perennial.
Here’s a super quick video on this lovely plant.
Table of Contents
Meet Tradescantia Pallida: Basic Knowledge and Origins
Tradescantia Pallida is invasive in certain tropical regions due to its root anatomy; the segmentation allows for easy re-rooting and growth.
You can expect three-petaled blooms during the warmer season. This plant loves warmth and can not tolerate frost; it can, however, survive colder temperatures as a groundcover plant.
Review some easy facts down below:
|Common Name||Purple Queen, Purple Heart Plant, Purple Wandering Jew|
|Botanical Name||Tradescantia Pallida|
|Size||can grow as tall as 14 inches; as wide as 16 inches|
|Sun Exposure||Full sun|
|Soil Consistency||Moist, well-drained, and lightweight|
|Soil pH||6-8, mildly alkaline|
|Flower Color||Purple or pink|
|Toxicity||Toxic to animals and humans|
|Common Pests||Caterpillars and snails|
Varieties of Tradescantia Pallida
There are 60+ varieties of Tradescantia!
- Tradescantia bracteata Small – Bracted spiderwort
- Tradescantia canaliculata Raf.
- Tradescantia edwardsiana Tharp – Plateau spiderwort
- Tradescantia Ernestine Anderson & Woodson – Ernest’s spiderwort
- Tradescantia gigantea Rose – Giant spiderwort
- Tradescantia hirsuticaulis Small – Hairystem spiderwort
- Tradescantia hirsutiflora Bush – Hairyflower spiderwort
- Tradescantia humilis Rose – Texas spiderwort
- Tradescantia longipes E.S.Anderson & Woodson – Wild crocus
- Tradescantia occidentalis (Britton) Smyth – Prairie spiderwort
- Tradescantia ohiensis Raf. – Ohio spiderwort
- Tradescantia ozarkana E.S.Anderson & Woodson – Ozark spiderwort
- Tradescantia paludosa E.S.Anderson & Woodson – Confederate spiderwort
- Tradescantia reverchonii Bush – Reverchon’s spiderwort
- Tradescantia roseolens Small – Longleaf spiderwort
- Tradescantia subacaulis Bush – Stemless spiderwort
- Tradescantia subaspera Ker Gawl. – Zigzag spiderwort
- Tradescantia tharpii E.S.Anderson & Woodson – Tharp’s spiderwort
- Tradescantia virginiana L. – Virginia spiderwort type
Series Sillamontanae (II) D.R.Hunt (2 species)
- Tradescantia rozynskii Matuda
- Tradescantia sillamontana Matuda Type
- Tradescantia cirrifera Mart.
- Tradescantia maysillesii Matuda syn. T. subramosa, T. subtilis
- Tradescantia monosperma Brandegee
- Tradescantia nuevoleonensis Matuda syn. T. potosina
- Tradescantia pinetorum Greene – Pinewoods spiderwort type
- Tradescantia wrightii Rose & Bush – Wright’s spiderwort
Series Orchidophyllae (IV) D.R.Hunt (2 species)
- Tradescantia mirandae Matuda
- Tradescantia orchidophylla
- Tradescantia commelinids Schult
- Tradescantia coscomatepecana Matuda
- Tradescantia cymbispatha C.B.Clarke
- Tradescantia deficiens Brandegee
- Tradescantia gracillima Standl.
- Tradescantia plusiantha Standl.
- Tradescantia standleyi Steyermark
- Tradescantia tonalamonticola Matuda
- Tradescantia venezuelensis St
How To Care for the Tradescantia Pallida plant
There’s a reason why this plant is known as the ‘creeping plant’; it spreads out extensively as it grows. Pallida will grow much more rapidly than other plants you might have in your collection, and that’s the only aspect that requires a little extra attention.
Higher intensity of sunlight provides these plants the energy to produce a vivid and stunning set of foliage. Full sun suits Tradescantia Pallida best; they can also grow in partial shade, but that would render their leaves green rather than purple.
Make sure not to expose them to harsh sunlight; it can fry the foliage!
Lightweight soil that is well-drained is excellent for the Tradescantia Pallida. Ensure adequate moisture levels; this plant requires frequent watering when it’s young.
Using a potting mix in a porous container is an easy fix. Ensuring supplementation of perlite or compost would make the environment ideal for the Pallida.
Young Tradescantia Pallidas require water replenishment at least once a week. Since mature Pallidas are drought-resistant, they do not require watering until the soil starts to feel dry to touch.
Watering frequency should be increased only during the blooming season.
Tradescantia Pallida is a perennial plant and can survive in an extensive range of temperatures. What it can’t tolerate is frost.
The humidity levels in a typical household are ample enough to keep the Pallida growing. For dry environments, you can opt for a humidifier.
No need for any fertilizer unless you’re adamant about using one. Just ensure its dilution in a 50:50 ratio.
Propagation of the Tradescantia Pallida
The segmented roots allow for easy propagation. You can opt for propagation by stem cutting, division, or even transplantation. Simply place a healthy node into some moist potting mix, and it’ll start growing.
Alternatively, you could place the node in water, and the node will start to form roots. Once that’s done, transplant it into one of your porous containers.
Pruning of the Tradescantia Pallida
Tradescantia Pallida is invasive during the summer season, and its extensive spread requires frequent pruning. Consider pruning during warmer seasons when Pallida is at its growth peak stage.
Use a sterilized pair of scissors to chop off at least half of the overgrown stems.
Repotting the Tradescantia Pallida
Do note that this plant tends to ‘spread’ rather than grow up to larger sizes. Hence the need for frequent repotting shall rarely arise, and one should address their spreading by active pruning.
Repotting would only be required when the roots start bulging out of the sieved container.
Challenges & Solutions
Tradescantia Pallida is a relatively tough plant; it, therefore, requires less maintenance and faces fewer challenges staying healthy. However, extreme negligence can deteriorate the health of any plant. Watch out for these signs!
Wilting of Leaves
Excess watering is the cause of wilting of leaves. Mature Tradescantia Pallidas require less water, and you should only water them when the soil feels dry to touch.
Holes in Leaves
Finding holes in the leaves is indicative of an insect feeding on it, such as a caterpillar or snail. Placing a layer of wood chips, gravel, or diatomaceous earth will offer a protective coating and keep these pests away.
Ask Away: The FAQ Section
Tradescantia Pallida can grow up to 14 inches in height.
It takes one to four weeks for Tradescantia Pallida to root.
The Purple Heart can survive winter but can not tolerate frost.
Tradescantia Pallida is mildly toxic to humans, cats, and dogs.
Used as an anti-inflammatory supplement
Improves blood circulation
Eliminates pollutants from the air
Cascading in baskets
You should transplant Tradescantia Pallida either during Autumn when it has finished flowering or later in the winter before its growth starts again.