Ask a Question forum: Leggy Moses In A Cradle

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Name: the5thbeatle
Northeast CT
Mar 14, 2016 9:53 AM CST
Almost four months ago I planted a cutting of Moses In A Cradle (Tradescantia spathacea ?) in a pot.

At the time of planting, it was about 6" tall. It's kept right near a window that has a southernly exposure, but because of outdoor window awnings, the light isn't direct or very strong. I water it deeply about once a week, when the soil at the top of the pot feels dry. This plant has grown to a height of about 15", and it's very leggy. It's like a stem with leaves (no more than 3 or 4" long) about every two or three inches on a long stalk. It can't support itself, so I put a dowel in the pot to keep if from falling over.

I've kept Moses In The Cradle in the past, and they were wonderful compact plants that never got leggy.

Could you please tell me what I'm doing wrong, and how I can fix it?

Thank you for whatever help you can offer.
Thumb of 2016-03-14/the5thbeatle/4eab06

Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
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Mar 14, 2016 10:41 AM CST
Hi and Welcome! No kidding, you're the 5th beatle?? Hilarious!

Could you please show us another shot of that plant from the top? I'm thinking it doesn't really look like my 'Moses in the Cradle' at all, and you might actually have something else altogether. Mine don't ever stand up straight like that. They're sort of a low, creeping plant that puts out shoots along the ground and rosettes of leaves on those shoots .

Here are mine - I have them growing in dappled sun, deep shade and all light levels in between. They're weeds here -very forgiving. I yanked a couple up so you can see the fleshy shoots that travel along the ground and put up leaves.
Thumb of 2016-03-14/dyzzypyxxy/887a2a Thumb of 2016-03-14/dyzzypyxxy/e7a967
Thumb of 2016-03-14/dyzzypyxxy/a7c356

If what you have is the same as these, I think you should let it lie down along the ground, in maybe a wide, shallow pot. They like damp leaf litter, so it might want more water/humidity, too.


"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." โ€“Winston Churchill
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL ๐ŸŒต๐ŸŒทโš˜๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒป (Zone 8b)
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Mar 14, 2016 12:32 PM CST
Hi & welcome! Your plant looks like it may be this one, purple heart/purple queen: Purple Queen (Tradescantia pallida)

The pics should give you an idea of its' habit, not the same type of upright entity as T. spathacea. If so, it needs as much sun as possible & looks its' best (IMVHO) in as much direct sun as possible. That results in the darkest purple, most compact growth, more flowers.
๐Ÿ‘€๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‚ - SMILE! -โ˜บ๐Ÿ˜Žโ˜ปโ˜ฎ๐Ÿ‘ŒโœŒโˆžโ˜ฏ๐Ÿฃ๐Ÿฆ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿ๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿพ
The less I interfere, the more balance mother nature provides.
๐Ÿ‘’๐ŸŽ„๐Ÿ‘ฃ๐Ÿก๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿโฆโง ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒป๐ŸŒธ๐ŸŒผ๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒฝโ€โ˜€๐ŸŒบ
โ˜•๐Ÿ‘“ The only way to succeed is to try.

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