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TRADESCANTIA zebrina

Image of Tradescantia zebrina

Gerald L. Klingaman

Family

Commelinaceae

Botanical Name

TRADESCANTIA zebrina

Plant Common Name

Wandering Traveler

General Description

The showy bicolored leaves of inchplant contrast well with brightly colored bedding plants. This evergreen native of Mexico is a fleshy-stemmed perennial with a trailing habit. Its leaves are oval to lance-shaped and clasp the stems, which have swollen joints at the base of each leaf. These have silvery purple on tops lined with two distinct silver stripes and vibrant violet-purple undersides. In summer it produces small lavender-pink flowers that are marginally showy.

This tender perennial is happiest in bright, indirect light and moist, but not wet, organic-rich soil. It is used as a perennial ground cover in frost-free areas, or as a houseplant, bedding plant or container plant in colder areas. Inchplant can cause a mild skin irritation when handled.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    11 - 15

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 24

  • Plant Type

    Tender Perennial

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    6"-10" / 15.2cm - 25.4cm

  • Width

    5'-10' / 1.5m - 3.0m

  • Bloom Time

    Indeterminate

  • Native To

    Mexico

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Average

  • Soil type

    Loam

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Habit

    Prostrate/Trailing

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Light Pink, Light Blue

  • Fruit Color

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green, Purple, Burgundy, Silver

  • Foliage Color (Spring) Modifier

    Striped/Striated

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Purple, Burgundy, Silver

  • Foliage Color (Summer) Modifier

    Striped/Striated

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Green, Purple, Burgundy, Silver

  • Foliage Color (Fall) Modifier

    Striped/Striated

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Green, Purple, Burgundy, Silver

  • Foliage Color (Winter) Modifier

    Striped/Striated

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Bedding Plant, Container, Edging, Groundcover, Hanging Basket, Houseplant, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No