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Tradescantia brevifolia (Trans-pecos spiderwort)
Marcus, Joseph A.

Tradescantia brevifolia

Tradescantia brevifolia (Torr.) Rose

Trans-Pecos Spiderwort

Commelinaceae (Spiderwort Family)

Synonym(s): Setcreasea brevifolia, Setcreasea ovata, Tradescantia leiandra var. brevifolia

USDA Symbol: TRBR6

USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

Sprawling herbaceous, succulent perennial. Stems to 30cm in length. Leaves spirally arranged, clasping, bluish-green.


From the Image Gallery

5 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Root Type: Tuberous
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate , Whorled
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Shape: Oblanceolate
Leaf Venation: Parallel
Leaf Pubescence: Glabrous
Leaf Margin: Entire
Leaf Texture: Leathery
Inflorescence: Terminal
Fruit Type: Capsule
Size Notes: Stems prostrate, up to about 1 foot long.
Leaf: Bluish-green.
Flower: Petals three.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Pink , Purple
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct
Bloom Notes: Flowering after rains from spring until fall.


Native Distribution: Trans-Pecos Texas and northern Mexico.
Native Habitat: Rocky, grassy, north-facing slopes and mountainsides.

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry , Moist
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8)


Use Medicinal: Flower used medicinally for the treatment of dysentery, enterorrhagia and hemoptysis.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Fragrant Flowers: yes
Interesting Foliage: yes
Deer Resistant: No

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Tradescantia brevifolia in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Tradescantia brevifolia in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Tradescantia brevifolia


Record Modified: 2023-03-01
Research By: Joseph A. Marcus

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