Home of the Practically Perfect Pink Phlox and other native plants for pollinators

Friday, September 6, 2013

'Morning Grace'

Isn't she lovely!
Tradescantia rosea 'Morning Grace' is a pretty little spiderwort that I happened upon when I visited my son  this past summer. We decided to visit the The Van Landingham Glen on the UNC Charlotte campus. The  7-acre Glen is a woodland garden showcasing Carolina native plants and, it's also known for having one of the most diverse rhododendron gardens in the Southeast.

It was early in June and we had missed the big rhodo flowering show, but, there were still lots to see along the winding woodland trails...lilies, ferns and later blooming wildflowers were planted among the azaleas and rhododendrons. That's when I saw what looked like the smallest spiderwort ever. Had the azaleas been in bloom I might have completely overlooked it, as it was, I had to drop to my knees to get a closer look at the tiny lavender-pink blooms with the golden stamens. It was lovely and it was certainly a member of the Tradescantia family, but which one?
I didn't have to go far to discover the identity of the sweet Tradescantia. Luckily for me 'Morning Grace' was among the small grouping of Carolina native plants the arboretum was selling. Although, native to coastal states* in the Southeast, I decided to give the diminutive spiderwort a chance and, boy, am I glad.  This little cutie pie has bloomed continually since early June, bonus points for having a steady stream of small pollinator visitors and being rabbit and deer resistant! It's a keeper!

 I hope it stays happy in my garden for a long, long time...


*Southern Appalachian region (USDA hardiness zones 6 to 9) On the whole, Spiderwort prefers a moist, rich, acidic soils in part shade, not in full sun or deep shade.

 Gail Eichelberger is a gardener and therapist in Middle Tennessee. She loves wildflowers and native plants and thoroughly enjoys writing about the ones she grows at Clay and Limestone. She reminds all that the words and images are the property of the author and cannot be used without written permission.


  1. That is a lovely delicate shade of lavender. I'm so glad it's happy at C&L!

  2. Tradescantia (the deep purple one) was one of the plants I inherited when we bought our house over 25 years ago. It was a bit dominant at the time, and still lingers here and there. It can be a great plant, but here has a tendency to flop heavily on top of its neighbours. Yours is very pretty, and perhaps better behaved.

  3. I hope so too. How sweet. ~~Dee

  4. I like that it is so little, Gail. What a beauty it is!

  5. Sweet! Don't you just love those unexpected discoveries? I'm glad it likes your garden, but I'm not surprised. :)

  6. Sweet! Don't you just love those unexpected discoveries? I'm glad it likes your garden, but I'm not surprised. :)

  7. I love finding a plant to bring home. Yours is a cutie.

  8. Heidi/ IN Woodland gardenerSeptember 7, 2013 at 12:12 PM

    What a precious little bloom! I do so love spiderworts. I'll have to keep an eye out for this one to add to my small collection of spiderworts. Our south-eastern Indiana weather has been so wonderful this year that my Ohio spiderwort has bloomed all summer and is STILL blooming! Hopefully this little darling will bloom as much for you!

  9. Such a beautiful colour and a sweet little plant.

  10. A little bit of beauty, a treasure, they are the anchor points in our lives.

  11. If it's like any of the others, you'll be sharing this sweet treasure with friends for years to come. I have yet to see a variety that doesn't travel by roots and seed like crazy. But if it's wee and pretty - that's a really good thing.

  12. I adore spiderworts and this one is a keeper...love the color!!!


"Insects are the little things that run the world." Dr. E O Wilson