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Virginia Spiderwort

Tradescantia virginiana

Virginia Spiderwort

General Information

Virginia Spiderwort is an easy-to-grow, clump-forming herbaceous perennial.

Virginia Spiderwort is typically found in moist prairies, fertile woodlands, open woods, meadows, hillsides, stream banks, and along roadsides. It prefers moist, fertile sites but can adapt to average garden soils. It grows well in either sun or shade but will flower better in full sun.

Virginia Spiderwort has white violet or purple three-petaled flowers. Its yellow stamens contrast will the flower. Flowers open successively, a few at a time, but each flower is only open for a day. Virginia Spiderwort blooms from late May to July. Given the right conditions it can bloom again in the fall.

Spiderwort’s common name comes from the threadlike, silky, viscous secretion that is released when the stem is cut. Native Americans used the plant medicinally. The leaves can be eaten raw in salads, and the plant can be used in teas.

Plant Information

Plant Type:

Herbaceous perennial

Sun Preference:

Full Sun * Part Sun

Soil Moisture Preference:

Medium-Dry * Dry

Plant Height:

1 to 2 feet

Plant Width:

1 to 2 feet

Plant Spacing:

1 to 2 feet

Flower Color:


Flower timing:

May to July

Culture Information:

The best locations to plant Virginia Spiderwort include native plant gardens, pollinator gardens, rain gardens, woodland or shade gardens, wild gardens or naturalized areas.

When first planted, Virginia Spiderwort should be watered weekly for first few months, unless at least an inch of rain has been received in the last week to help it get established. After it becomes established, Virginia Spiderwort benefits from supplemental watering during extended dry periods.

As with most perennials, Virginia Spiderwort can be cut to the ground after the first freeze or left until late winter. Foliage tends to sprawl given sufficient moisture or may die back during the heat of summer with little watering.


Clay Soil
Wet Soil
Black Walnut

Pests & Disease:

Virginia Spiderwort typically has no serious insect problems. Young shoots are susceptible to snail damage.

Virginia Spiderwort has no serious disease problems.

Wildlife Use:

Pollinators: Virginia Spiderwort attracts many pollinators including bees and butterflies.

Birds: N/A.

Mammals: Deer, livestock, and rabbits occasionally feed on Virginia Spiderwort foliage.

Other: N/A.

Native to:

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