Spiderwort Color?

(Zone 5a)

This is my Virginia Spiderwort that I planted last spring as a dormant bare root.

I am curious, what causes the wide color variations in a single species? (You can see that at a glance on the main PlantFiles page for this plant.) Maybe there is no simple answer, but I really like this darker purple and would really like to plant more, if I could. Would I get the same result if I hand pollinated this plant and made sure my other spiderworts would not cross pollinate with it?

(Zone 5a)

No replies so far...

Maybe I'll just ramble... I still do not know what causes the spiderwort to be one color over another, but I just ordered the pink variation of this plant. I guess if I have any plant collection it is Tradescantia, I even have an indoor species.

Well, one thing I notice on my Virginia Spiderwort and also saw on another person's photos is the marroonish color along the edges of the leaves. I looked at my Ohio and Prairie species and did not see this. Is that specific to the Virginia species? If so, that would make a good "field mark" to keep in mind when trying to ID a Spiderwort.

Anne Arundel,, MD(Zone 7b)

I have spiderwort that volunteered, and then I got a couple from friends. I know COncord Grape was one, and I bought Sweet Kate/aka Blue and Gold.

Sweet Kate is the only gold clump.
I now have a tall intense pink one, a dark purple, a lighter purple, and a pinkish purple one, and a white. They mix and can self sow. I have never noticed maroon edges on any of mine. Nor have I seen that in ID, but rather bristles or hairs on the calyx.

I like dark purple the best too. It really makes the yellow stamens pop.

I think all you can do is separate out what you don't want, and you can cut off stems after bloom to prevent hybridizing.

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