Tradescantia Pallida the Wandering Jew with the Purple Heart

Are you looking for a plant that attracts attention? The bright purple leaves and stems of Tradescantia pallida will do the trick! This species of Wandering Jew is called a purple-hearted plant, purple queen and more.

Popular in FROST-free regions, a Purple Heart ground cover can be extremely noticeable. But it hangs just as well, and it also makes a fantastic houseplant.

All about the purple queen

Native to eastern Mexico, this particular species of wandering Jews is a madness. Its leaves, long and pointed, can reach seven centimeters in length. Sometimes the tips remain red or green, while the rest of the leaf turns purple.

The stems have obvious segmentation along their entire length. This has contributed to its spread as an invasive or aggressive species in warmer climates. At the joints, the plant is weaker and easy to break, but it easily takes root from the joint. This also makes it very easy to grow from cuttings!

In cooler climates, there is little risk of spreading. Tradescantia pallida does not tolerate the frosty climate and dies in the cold.

The flowers it produces are small. Often trifoliate, they range from white to pink and lavender. They are not particularly noticeable, but they offer a counterpoint to the shiny foliage.

The many names of Purple Heart

What’s in a name? In the Matter of this plant a lot.

Initially called Setcreasea pallida, the botanical name Setcreasea purpurea was also used. The first was its botanical name from 1911. Both names ceased to be used in 1975 when they were reclassified as Tradescantia pallida.

As for his common names, he also has a lot of them! The wandering jew, the walking jew, the purple heart, the purple Queen and the purple secretion are used. It is also called a combination of one of the above elements, such as Wandering jew Purple Heart.

The name Wandering Jew is now considered a passport due to its xenophobic nature, and many have chosen to call this type of Tradescantia Purple Queen instead. Although it does not seem sectarian to use the name to refer to an ancient story of the same name dating back to the thirteenth century, the familiar association of the use of history in discrimination cannot be ignored.

A polluting cleaner for the interior

Phytoremediation is becoming a popular topic in our over-polluted world. And that’s where the Purple Heart excels. Its ability to eliminate volatile organic compounds (or VOCs) from our indoor air is highly appreciated!

More and more often, people are turning to plants to improve their air quality. Tradescantia pallida was rated “superior” after an extended study at the University of Georgia. He only lost to a handful of other plants.

English ivy and wax plants were slightly better than Purple Heart at purifying the air. The same applies to the asparagus fern and the purple wafer. But if you want to purify your air, it is useful to grow a mixture of them!

Some Tests have also shown that this plant can help absorb heavy metals in the soil. More tests still need to be done, but it is clear that this plant will improve your life in more ways than one.

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