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Tradescantia spathacea (Boat lily )

Beginner
skill rating
1 hour care
per year
0.3m
Max height
0.6m
Max spread
2-5 years
To maturity
Low
Toxicity

Plant details

Botanical name

Tradescantia spathacea

Other names

Boat lily , Christ in the manger, Cradle lily , Men in a boat, Moses in the cradle, Moses in his cradle, Moses in the bulrushes, Moses on a raft, Oyster plant, Prayer plant, Purple-leaved spiderwort, Three men in a boat, Boatlily, Rhoeo discolor, Rhoeo spathacea, Moses-in-a-basket

Genus

Tradescantia Tradescantia

Species

T. spathacea - T. spathacea is a tender, compact, clump-forming, evergreen perennial with rosettes of semi-erect, fleshy, linear to lance-shaped, dark green leaves, dark purple beneath, and, throughout the year, cymes of white flowers surrounded by prominent, persistent, purple bracts.


Tradescantia spathacea is: Evergreen

Habit

Clump-forming, Rosette

Toxicity

Contact with sap may irritate skin.

Flower

Dark-purple, White in All seasons

Foliage

Dark-purple, Dark-green in All seasons

How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest-free.

Specific pests

Vine weevil , Aphids Vine weevil , Aphids

Diseases

Generally disease-free.

General care

Pruning

May become invasive in ideal growing conditions.

Propagation methods

Division, Stem tip cuttings


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Where to grow

Tradescantia spathacea (Boat lily ) will reach a height of 0.3m and a spread of 0.6m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Beds and borders, City, Conservatory, Containers, Drought Tolerant, Greenhouse, Low Maintenance, Sub-Tropical, Underplanting

Cultivation

In frost-free areas, grow in fertile, moist soil in sun or shade. Direct, intense summer sun may scorch leaves. Under glass, grow in loam-based compost in bright filtered light. In growth, water moderately & feed monthly with a low-nitrogen fertiliser.

Soil type

Sandy, Loamy

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained, Moisture-retentive

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Partial Shade, Full Shade, Full Sun

Aspect

South, East, West

Exposure

Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Indoor unheated (H2), Tender in frost (H3)

Companion plants

We do not currently have companion plants added for this plant.

Botanical name

Tradescantia spathacea

Other names

Boat lily , Christ in the manger, Cradle lily , Men in a boat, Moses in the cradle, Moses in his cradle, Moses in the bulrushes, Moses on a raft, Oyster plant, Prayer plant, Purple-leaved spiderwort, Three men in a boat, Boatlily, Rhoeo discolor, Rhoeo spathacea, Moses-in-a-basket

Genus

Tradescantia Tradescantia

Species

T. spathacea - T. spathacea is a tender, compact, clump-forming, evergreen perennial with rosettes of semi-erect, fleshy, linear to lance-shaped, dark green leaves, dark purple beneath, and, throughout the year, cymes of white flowers surrounded by prominent, persistent, purple bracts.

Native to

Central America, Mexico

Foliage

Evergreen

Habit

Clump-forming, Rosette

Toxicity

Contact with sap may irritate skin.


Colour

Flower

Dark-purple, White in All seasons

Foliage

Dark-purple, Dark-green in All seasons


How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest-free.

Specific pests

Vine weevil , Aphids

Diseases

Generally disease-free.

General care

Pruning

May become invasive in ideal growing conditions.

Propagation methods

Division, Stem tip cuttings


Monthly care advice


Where to grow

Tradescantia spathacea (Boat lily ) will reach a height of 0.3m and a spread of 0.6m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Beds and borders, City, Conservatory, Containers, Drought Tolerant, Greenhouse, Low Maintenance, Sub-Tropical, Underplanting

Cultivation

In frost-free areas, grow in fertile, moist soil in sun or shade. Direct, intense summer sun may scorch leaves. Under glass, grow in loam-based compost in bright filtered light. In growth, water moderately & feed monthly with a low-nitrogen fertiliser.

Soil type

Sandy, Loamy

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained, Moisture-retentive

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Partial Shade, Full Shade, Full Sun

Aspect

South, East, West

Exposure

Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Indoor unheated (H2), Tender in frost (H3)

USDA zones

Zone 11, Zone 10, Zone 9

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This plant likes... Garden match
Soil types: Sandy, Loamy Tell us...
Soil drainage: Moist but well-drained, Moisture-retentive Tell us...
Soil pH: Acid, Alkaline, Neutral Tell us...
Light: Partial Shade, Full Shade, Full Sun Tell us...
Aspect: South, East, West Tell us...
Exposure: Sheltered Tell us...
Hardiness: Indoor unheated (H2), Tender in frost (H3) Tell us...

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