4.7 out of 5 (115 experiences)
About Small-Leaf Spiderwort
Tradescantia fluminensis is an exceptionally easy plant to care for and rewards growers with delightful white blossoms. They are extremely easy to propagate by stem and one plant can give rise to dozens of new ones, which makes them great for sharing. 🤝 As houseplants they often trail, but will also creep along the ground if grown outdoors. Their succulent leaves make them sensitive to frost, so be sure to bring them indoors if your winter temperatures dip below freezing. ❄️
Also known as
Inch Plant, Tradescantia tricolour and Quicksilver
How to care for Small-Leaf Spiderwort
How often to water your Small-Leaf Spiderwort
Small-Leaf Spiderwort needs 0.5 cups of water every 9 when it doesn’t get direct sunlight and is potted in a 5" pot located in New York.
Use our water calculator to personalize watering recommendations to your environment or download Greg for more advanced recommendations for all of your plants.
Water 0.5 cups every
Check the growing potential in your area
A plant's growing potential is determined from its location, the time of year, and current local weather.
New York, New York
Finding light for Small-Leaf Spiderwort in your home
Small-Leaf Spiderwort may have difficulty thriving, and will drop leaves 🍃, without ample sunlight.
Place it less than 3 feet from a south-facing window to keep it happy during this time of reduced sunlight intensity in New York ⛅.
How to fertilize Small-Leaf Spiderwort
Most potting soils come with ample nutrients which plants use to produce new growth.
By the time your plant has depleted the nutrients in its soil it’s likely grown enough to need a larger pot anyway.
To replenish this plant's nutrients, repot your Small-Leaf Spiderwort after it doubles in size or once a year—whichever comes first.
Small-Leaf Spiderwort is generally easy to care for, though some plant parents report facing challenges with growing it. Check out the reviews down below to read more about their experiences!
Small-Leaf Spiderwort prefers for the soil to dry out between waterings and should be watered regularly. Use our water calculator to personalize watering recommendations to your environment or download Greg for more advanced recommendations for all of your plants.
Small-Leaf Spiderwort may have difficulty thriving and will drop leaves 🍃 without ample sunlight. Place it less than 3 feet from a window to maximize the potential for growth. Select your region to see how the current weather in your area affects the placement in your home 🏡.
Small-Leaf Spiderwort is not safe to consume. If you, a family member, or a pet has ingested any amount of plant material contact Poison Control, US (800) 222-1222, or your veterinarian. If you have children, cats, or dogs in the home, we suggest keeping this plant out of reach.
Small-Leaf Spiderwort doesn’t require additional humidity. Plants absorb most water through their root system rather than their leaves, so the best way to provide humidity for your plants is through watering the soil.
Small-Leaf Spiderwort does best in well-draining soil. A good soil will contain lots of organic matter such as coco coir as well as perlite or vermiculite to help with drainage. Adding a handful of perlite to regular store-bought potting soil should do the trick!
Small-Leaf Spiderwort should be repotted after it doubles in size or once a year, whichever comes first. Fresh potting soil has all the nutrients your plant needs, so as long as it’s refreshed yearly, you shouldn’t need to use fertilizer. Remember, plants get their energy from sunlight, not fertilizer!
It’s common for Small-Leaf Spiderwort to go dormant in the wintertime and you may notice their growth slow down. Waterings should be spaced out more during this time.
Small-Leaf Spiderwort is native to the Americas.
Yes, you may see your Small-Leaf Spiderwort bloom with the right amount of sunlight and water.
Small-Leaf Spiderwort has long, trailing foliage which makes them a great addition to a hanging planter. The newest growth will emerge from the tip of the stems.
USDA Hardiness Zone
Small-Leaf Spiderwort can be grown outdoors in USDA Hardiness Zones 9a-12b. Find your local hardiness zone here.
Small-Leaf Spiderwort can be propagated by the stem method. To propagate:
- Make a cut just above the node. The node is the break in the stem where the leaf emerges.
- To get the cutting to root, you can either:
- Place the cutting in water until roots emerge and are ~2” long and then transplant into well-draining soil, or
- Place the cutting directly into well-draining soil and water when dry.
Yellow leaves aren’t always a reason to panic, and can be a normal part of a plant’s life cycle. Unless brand new leaves are turning yellow or all the leaves change color at once, it’s likely just your plant shedding old leaves.
Overwatering and root rot are the most likely cause of problems in Small-Leaf Spiderwort, since they are sensitive to wet soil. The leaves may also appear to be curling or drooping. Less often, yellow leaves are caused by underwatering, nutrient deficiencies, or pests.
Replace soggy soil with fresh, dry soil and download Greg to make sure your plant never gets overwatered again!
Care Summary for Small-Leaf Spiderwort
0.5 cups every 9 days
< 3ft from a window
Repot after 2x growth
Based on your location in New York, the 4” pot your plant is in, and that it doesn’t get direct sunlight.
What other plant parents say
The small-leaf spiderwort was one of my first plants in my “collection” and it was an EASY way to start. I picked it up at Lowes thinking it would be a good indoor hanging plant. Before I knew much about watering schedules and the importance of repotting, this poor little plant was surviving in the worst conditions. I watered it way too much, and it had super old, crummy soil with a plastic pot and no drainage. Eventually, I repotted it in a terracotta pot with a drainage hole and fresh soil and figured out a good watering schedule; my small-leaf DRASTICALLY improved after that. Not that it wasn’t doing well before, but it really grew after that. I’ve propagated it dozens of times and it doesn’t matter where or how you cut it. 10/10 plant for beginners.
Love love love this plant! She grows super fast in my east facing window, doesn’t like direct sun and will burn her leaves. However, super chill plant that is easy to care for. And beautiful to look at! Serves best in a hanging planter.
This one was a random Trader Joe’s find about a year ago. I had been hoping to stumble upon this one somewhere as the PINK is lovely, and I got luckily.
It’s been a tremendous grower- probably double in length since I’ve picked it up. It isn’t fussy- I haven’t even repotted it yet so it’s sitting in whatever soil it was in at TJ’s. Has done really well in two locations close to a window, but getting filtered/indirect light.
I love this plant and have gifted cuttings to friends in new pots throughout the years. This plant is so easy to propagate and keep. Trim up the defy vine like stems and put your cuttings in soil. In a week or two you’ll have a fully rooted and growing plant.
I will say it can me leggy and the leaves can get brown near the soil, BUT this is easy to fix with more sun. I’ve found that the brown leaves or leggy situation can be avoided with proper sunlight and rotation.
The great thing about this plant is, if it does not look the way you want, you can literally start a whole new one by cutting off healthy parts. After you do that you can uproot unhealthy plant, the. stick the cut stems in the soil to create a new plant!
So so easy to propagate! Just snip off below a node and place in water making sure the node(s) are fully in the water, within a few days roots will start to grow. I change the water every 5 days until they have enough roots to pot into soil and a clean pot ☺️