Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Plateau Spiderwort
Tradescantia edwardsiana

Family: Commelinaceae (ko-mel-ih-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Tradescantia (trad-es-KAN-tee-uh) (Info)
Species: edwardsiana (ed-wards-ee-AY-na) (Info)

One member has or wants this plant for trade.


12-18 in. (30-45 cm)
18-24 in. (45-60 cm)
24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

Unknown - Tell us

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
Medium Blue

Bloom Time:
Late Winter/Early Spring
Mid Spring
Late Spring/Early Summer


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)
7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing the rootball
From herbaceous stem cuttings
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse
From seed; stratify if sowing indoors
From seed; sow indoors before last frost
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Click thumbnail
to view:

By arroyophyte
Thumbnail #1 of Tradescantia edwardsiana by arroyophyte

By arroyophyte
Thumbnail #2 of Tradescantia edwardsiana by arroyophyte


1 positive
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive clastic2805 On Jul 12, 2011, clastic2805 from Carrollton, TX wrote:

This is a rampant and INVASIVE plant. Easy to grow, and is covered with brilliant blue flowers every morning from early Spring through first frosts. Flowers close in the afternoons, but are replaced each morning.

Self seeds freely and will take over open areas quickly in sun or shade.

This soujnds somewhat negative, but the plant is easy to grow, grows in all our soils, needs little care...and I have grown this pretty plant in my gardens for over 30 years. A nice plant!

Neutral htop On Feb 7, 2009, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

I have not grown this plant. Plateau spiderwort (Tradescantia edwardsiana) is a native perennial which is endemic to Texas. Usually, it grows in canyons and in rich woods along moist alluvial terraces and ravines along the Balcones Escarpment at the eastern and southern edges of the Edwards Plateau. It also can be found in the Central Mineral Basin (Llano Uplift), ranging north on calcareous substrates almost to Oklahoma. Records verify its existence in the following Texas counties: Bandera, Bell, Bexar, Brown, Caldwell, Collin, Comal, Coryell, Dallas, Fannin, Hays, Kendall, Lamar, Llano, Medina, Palo Pinto, Real, Travis, Uvalde and Val Verde. The leaf blade is longer than the sheath which differientiates Tradescantia edwardsiana from other species of Tradescantia native to Texas. The evergreen and edible leaves are 7 to 30 cm long and 15 to 45 mm wide. They are milnutely puberulent to glabrate. The elliptic, acuminate, 6 to 9 mm long sepals are glandular-puberulent. The petals, which are 1 to 1. 2 cm long, range in color from blue to purple, white to pale mauve and rarely bright pink. Tradescantia edwardsiana blooms from February to May.

Neutral frostweed On Nov 1, 2006, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Plateau Spiderwort, Tradescantia edwardsiana, is Endemic to Texas.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Carrollton, Texas
Crawford, Texas
San Antonio, Texas

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