Tradescantia Pallida: The Purple Heart Wandering Jew

Ed Wike
Written by
Last update:

All About The Purple Queen

Many people are searching for information on the Purple Queen Wandering Jew Plant. The Purple Queen is beautiful, easy to grow, and looks great in containers.

While many plants are grown to be green, there are individual growers and communities interested in rare or unusual colors. Rare colors can include, but are not limited to, red, blue, purple, pink, white, and yellow.

The Purple Queen is a striking purple cultivar of Tradescantia Pallida. It has the long, graceful purple foliage of the species and the same trailing habit. Unlike most Tradescantia, cultivars grow from the center of the plant, outwards, and not from the outside in.

This plant is so easy to grow it makes a great addition for beginners. It will live for many years as long as you give it the same care it’s giving you, and you will enjoy it for many years to come.

The Many Names For Purple Heart

The Purple Heart is a lush green cascading plant with purple and white variegation and heart-shaped leaves, and is often called Wandering Jew although it is not related to the true Wandering Jew plant. The plant has a special place in cultures in South America, Africa, and Asia. It is popular for its tolerance to a variety of light conditions from bright direct light to deep shade. It also has a distinct appearance which makes it a popular plant to stand out in a container or as a focal point.

While it is not related to the true Wandering Jew plant, it is a close cousin and is also known as Worship Vine, Warneckei, and Warneckei Violet. The plant is native to Mexico, Central America and Brazil.

The Purple Heart plant uses the sun to create its own energy by making food. Earlier versions of the Purple Heart would use the light and live on top of trees. The more sun it had, the more food it could make. As time went on, the Purple Heart migrated to the forest floor where it made enough food to keep itself alive.

An Indoor Contaminant Cleanser

Tradescantia pallida (also known as Spiderwort or Wandering Jew) are fun and easy-to-grow bright green-to-purple-to-yellow striped and variegated houseplants. Many gardeners who have found them growing unattended in waste areas (like next to roads) also see them as a weed, but in fact, they are more like a wildflower that can be gathered and moved from place to place. They are often propagated by gardeners from stem cuttings. They are also sold by nurseries in hanging basket format.

Tradescantia Pallida Care Tips

The Purple Heart Wandering Jew is an awesome plant for fish tank owners or indoor gardeners alike. It requires very little care, which makes it a great plant for beginner gardeners.

Here are a few tips that will help your Purple Heart Wandering Jew thrive.

Light: The Purple Heart Wandering Jew prefers moderate to bright lighting. Direct sunlight will usually result in the best looking purple foliage, but your specimen may get too much sun. Use caution when putting this plant in a sunny place. If your plant starts to get too much sun, you should be able to notice signs of sun damage on the leaves pretty quickly. If you don’t want to give up the location where you placed your plant, try cutting some of the leaves that are directly exposed to the sun off.

Temperature: The Purple Heart Wandering Jew will thrive at room temperature. As a matter of fact, it can get too cold for it if you live in a cold climate. If you live in an extremely cold climate, you should be careful not to let the temperature of your house fall below the 50-degree mark. Just remember though, if you have a spare room or basement that’s commonly on the colder side of the house, steering clear of the typically room temperature temperatures is preferred.

Growing Basics

Purple Heart is a very popular, tropical-looking perennial. It is very attractive and has narrow green & purple leaves that give it a tropical appearance. It's a hardy plant that requires minimal care. The Purple Heart plant is said to be the easiest plant in the world to grow, so let an easy care plant be a friendly reminder for you to water your plant!

This plant makes a good addition to any indoor or outdoor garden. Add it to your flower garden or cluster several in your landscape plan. It is a good choice for both beginners and experts to enjoy and a nice addition to a variety of spaces. You will find the purple heart wanderer easy to grow.

  • This is an exotic-looking plant with purple-tinted foliage and white flowering vines.
  • Plants grow slowly and have a pretty flower, with purple-blue flowers.
  • Zones 5 – 11 and work well in containers.
  • Well-draining soil is a must, as the purple heart wanderer is a tropical-looking plant.
  • The purple heart wanderer blooms from July to August, and extends the color until fall.
  • Add purple heart to your landscape plan to add tropical color!

Specialized Purple Heart Plant Tricks

One of the most interesting features of Tradescantia pallida is the purple color. This is not just an escape from the drab green of most plants, but is part of the reason for the hybrid plant's success.

The purple color comes from anthocyanins, a type of plant chemical that creates the color red in other plants. Anthocyanins are known to protect the purple heart plant from harmful UV rays, as well as mildew and pests. This color can act as camouflage to animals such as birds that prey on the plant.

Besides the purple color, there are many other features that make Tradescantia pallida stand out from other purple heart plants. One of the most interesting is the waxy coating on the leaves. This helps the plant to retain water, which is helpful in a warm, dry climate. It also helps to jettison excess water, which helps it stay cool in a hot, sunny climate.

The purple heart plant can be pruned to its heart's content and is generally hardy and pest-resistant. One benefit of this is that it makes including it in a variety of landscapes easy. It can also bloom almost any time, providing a burst of color mid-summer that few other plants can reproduce.