In spring and summer, a monthly feed will help her grow. Dilute it to half strength, as she doesn’t like her drinks strong. 

Quick facts

Botanical name

Tradescantia spathacea ‘sitara’


Moses-in-the-cradle; Boat lily

Plant type

Herbaceous perennial, indoor

Air purifying


Plant height (including pot)


Pet/baby safe

Mildly toxic if ingested

Nursery pot size


About Moses-in-the cradle

If you want to introduce a pop of contrast colour to your indoor jungle, Moses-in-the-cradle is a winner. Those long elegant leaves are finely striped green and cream on the top, with an intense purple underside. 

It will sometimes flower, but oddly they’re far less interesting than the leaves. They’re tiny little white blooms in the centre of the plant. The flowers are how this plant gets its popular name. The blossoms look like babies being cradled in the boat-like leaves (sort of).

A native of Belize, Guatemala and Mexico, it’s become a popular houseplant all over the world because it’s very easy to care for (bright light; regular watering; done). In spring and summer, give it a feed with liquid fertiliser to help it grow big(ish) and strong.

Even the largest plant is unlikely to grow bigger than 30cm, so it’s a lot of impact without taking up much space.

Did you know?

Moses-in-the-cradle grows so readily in Florida and Louisiana that it’s actually been categorised as an invasive species.

Need a pot? Fits great in: