She’s happy in anything from light shade to soft, bright light. She finds direct sun a bit too much.
She’s not a big drinker. If the top two inches of her soil feel dry it’s time for a drink. She’ll forgive irregular watering.
She likes moisture in the air. A bathroom is a brilliant home, or you can mist her regularly.
In spring and summer, a monthly feed will help her grow. Dilute it to half strength, as she doesn’t like her drinks strong.
Tradescantia spathacea ‘sitara’
Moses-in-the-cradle; Boat lily
Herbaceous perennial, indoor
Plant height (including pot)
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.