En Español

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - June 13, 2007

From: Sarasota, FL
Region: Southeast
Topic: Water Gardens, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Tradescantia as a water plant
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

I have a spiderwort plant, and when I found it at the nursery, it was in water by the pond plants, (I had no idea what kind of plant it was at the time) So I bought it, took it home, and repotted it with aquatic plant soil, and stuck it in my pond. Now after some research about it, I realized that somebody probably set the plant down in the wrong spot at the nursery, but I have had it in my pond for about a week now...so far it seems fine. My question is, what do you think? Should I remove it from my pond? I certainly don't want to drown it, it is a lovely plant, one of my favorites right now! Please let me know what your advice for this would be, I would greatly appreciate it! Thank you.

ANSWER:

Spiderwort is a member of the genus Tradescantia which is characterized as a prairie wildflower, so if you haven't done so already, I suggest getting the plant out of the pond.

The genus contains as many as 71 species, several of which bear the common name Spiderwort, so it is difficult to know which species you may have. Many of the commercially available spiderworts are in the Tradescantia-Andersoniana group. This group contains several cultivars of complex hybrid orgin. Two native spiderworts that are found in Florida are the Ohio Spiderwort Tradescantia ohiensis (bluejacket) and the Zigzag Spiderwort Tradescantia subaspera (zigzag spiderwort).


Tradescantia ohiensis

Tradescantia subaspera
 

More Herbs/Forbs Questions

Invasive American Germander from San Antonio
May 14, 2012 - I brought home some American Germander (Teucruim canadense) - page 259 In Wildflowers of Texas by Geyata Ajilvsgi - from a railroad right-of-way. Since it is a member of the mint family it has becom...
view the full question and answer

Care of Florida Blue or Lisiantus in Houston
October 24, 2005 - I'm in Houston, Texas and I'm growing, for the first time, Florida blues, Eustoma, purple. Since I am from California I'm not familiar with this plant. It's beautiful. How do I care for them i...
view the full question and answer

Low-maintenance native plants for Arizona
March 12, 2009 - Will you please suggest some Native plants that can be left without care for the summer and survive - other than cactus?
view the full question and answer

Starting Yarrow (Achillea) and Daucus from Seed
July 16, 2014 - I need to deadhead my cottage yarrow. I assume it has gone to seed. What do I do to plant it as seed? If I can do it, can I do it now or do I need to wait until spring. If I need to wait until spring,...
view the full question and answer

Wide appearance of Texas Bluebells in Hillsboro TX
July 07, 2011 - I thought Texas Bluebells were rare, endangered and liked wet places. So why, after at least a dozen years of not seeing any and during this horrible drought am I seeing them where I have never seen t...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | JOBS | SITEMAP | STAFF INTRANET
© 2016 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center