As a comment about Spiderwort (Tradescantia ohiensis), Chillybean wrote:

One of my favorite natives, if for no other reason than the fact that one of its common names is Cow Slobber. When you break off a stem, the gooey sap resembles... you guessed it, bovine drool.

I planted my first ones in spring of 2012, needing something that tolerates the field runoff we get every year. It can handle quite a bit of standing water. I have found it to be a prolific bloomer in the late spring. If it gets enough moisture, it will continue until early fall, but these blooms are sporadic.

I have not yet had any problem with spread, only having clumps within the area where I planted. This plant will flop over after a heavy rain, but I just leave it as is. I've never been a neat gardener. I enjoy watching the small pollinators that use the Cow Slobber, mostly flies and some Solitary Bees. I have not noticed any critter eating this, even though rabbits are often seen near it.

This year I noticed a patch of these across the road from us. The county plants US natives in the ditches, but I never saw this plant in the area other than our yard until now. I wonder if some little seeds travelled that way.
Aug 7, 2015 5:44 AM CST
Name: Dnd
SE Michigan (Zone 6a)
Daylilies Dog Lover Houseplants Organic Gardener I helped beta test the first seed swap Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Garden Ideas: Level 2
It's hard to believe that something with the name "Cow Slobber" could have such pretty little blue blossoms. I'm always on the lookout for rich blue flowers for my garden because true blue is so hard to come by, but it looks great in the summer because of it's 'cooling' effect on a garden. I'm not sure I"ll be planting Cow Slobber, not until I know more about it's invasive/non-invasive habit, etc...but you have me thinking about it now!
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Aug 9, 2015 12:41 PM CST
Name: Kim
Iowa (Zone 5a)
I kill ornamentals... on purpose.
Enjoys or suffers cold winters Spiders! Critters Allowed Birds Houseplants I helped beta test the first seed swap
Region: Nebraska Keeper of Poultry Rabbit Keeper Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Procrastinator Garden Ideas: Level 2
It has another common name that I would think appease little boys... Snotweed. Sticking tongue out

I guess it depends on so many factors as to whether or not it is a vigorous grower/spreader. Except for seeing some in the ditch, I've not had any leave the area where we put the original seedlings. The clumps just have grown larger.

I've never tried it, but may with a plant or two next year to see what it does. Some people will cut down some of the growth before it flowers to avoid the "flop".

This Ohio variety is the most common. I also have the Virginia and Prairie Cow Slobbers. I purchased the prairie ones after their bloom time, so do not know what color they will be. The Virginia are a deep gorgeous purple. That's my favorite color.

Maybe there is a hybrid or cultivar that is tame. I really like things "wild", but I have found they sometimes make bathrooms for feral cats. Grumbling I pulled thistle yesterday and placed it in bare spots under the patch where I smelled cat urine.
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