Tradescantia pallida, red leaf - care of the three-master flower

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In subtropical areas, the plant of the Commelinage family is often found in public parks. While the three-master flower native to Mexico is classified as an invasive plant in Florida, it offers us a striking eye-catcher in planters. The purplish purple shoots are an eye-catcher in the room or conservatory, especially in the cold season you may not miss this colorful plant. The red leaf is almost indestructible, only frost and waterlogging can be dangerous to the plant with the interesting leaf patterning.
Location and ground
The family of three-master flowers is diverse. However, the individual varieties do not only vary in appearance, but also differ in the location and care requirements. Tradescantia pallida is a plant native to Mexico, which needs a full sun. Even a place in the light partial shade should be avoided, so that the impressive leaf coloration does not fade. Fahles foliage does not regenerate, only the new leaves of the three-moth flower revive the fascinating grain. Cultivate the colorful red leaf on a south-facing windowsill or in summer directly on the sunny balcony.
The heat-loving, herbaceous growing plant is cultivated almost exclusively in the bucket. Grab a loose, humus rich substrate from the garden. But also normal potting soil has proven itself. Almost more important than the soil consistency is the drainage of porous material at the bottom of the planter.
Pouring and fertilizing
The plant with the purple violet shoots tolerates no dryness, the root ball must never completely dry out. In the main growing season, water immediately as soon as the top substrate layer is noticeably dry. But even in wet conditions, the Mexican plant is not good to talk. Root rot can be avoided by pouring regularly but in moderation. At the bottom of the tub lava chippings or potsherds additionally ensure that the excess water can flow off faster. During the wintering, the casting rate is reduced to a minimum. Tip: Do not pour directly over the foliage of Mexican beauty. This helps to avoid unsightly leaf spots.
Tradescantia pallida "Purple Heart" is about finding the right amount of nutrients. Especially the substrate of potted plants can only store limited minerals. The red leaf is extremely frugal. The plant is fertilized twice a month from March to September with a conventional liquid fertilizer. Halve the amount stated on the packaging. Because too much fertilizer can also lead to an unwanted green color of the leaves.
Planting and repotting
The plant, which belongs to the family Commelinaceae, forms long, flaccid drooping shoots with increasing age. For this reason, it makes sense to cultivate the red leaf directly in a hanging beam. At temperatures below 8° C the Tradescantia reacts sensitively. Therefore, it is not recommended to do a year-round outdoor planting. Younger specimens are available in the well-stocked garden shop or directly over the Internet. If you want to plant a rooted offshoot or treat the plant to a new planter, you should follow these tips:

  • When repotting, the new bucket must be larger by a few centimeters than previously used.
  • Lay a thick layer of lava, expanded clay or potsherds on the ground.
  • Apply a handful of humus rich soil.
  • Free the plant from the old substrate.
  • Plant and fill cavities with fresh soil.
  • Cast heavily.
Repotting is done as soon as the roots completely fill the planter. The ideal time is between February and March, even before the plant has fully awakened from the vegetation break and has begun to develop new shoots and leaves.
To cut
After just a few years, the red leaf is losing its distinctive appearance. The shoots are pale and steadily longer. You can only partially halt this process. It is therefore advisable to regularly grow cuttings. Reduce the long shoots by a few centimeters every year to slow down the aging process. Use a well-sharpened knife instead of a pair of scissors. Thus, the interface is not crushed, but cut clean. Dead or twisted shoots should be removed as close to the ground as possible.
The sturdy plant can be easily multiplied by cuttings in spring and summer. This measure is particularly useful because older red-leaf plants have an unsightly growth due to the long shoots. Use about 15 cm long shoot tips, which you cut with a sharp knife at the bottom of an angle.If available, you can wet the end of the drive with a special rooting powder.
  • Let the interface dry for one day.
  • Insert the cut plant shoot into lean soil.
  • The location should be bright, but not sunny.
  • The ambient temperature should not fall below 20° C.
  • Keep the substrate moist with a water sprayer.
Even without powder, you can accelerate the rooting: Wrap the vessel and the cutting with a transparent, slightly perforated foil. Rotblatt is a very heat-loving plant, which is also noticeable in the formation of root system. You can avoid rot rotations in the soil by removing the foil for several hours every day.
Tradescantia pallida is sensitive to cold, even at temperatures below 8° C, the Exotin stops growing. At the latest, if the outside temperatures drop permanently to this value, you should place the three-masted flower in a frost-proof room. The plant is wintered at 10° to 15° C. The winter quarters should not be warmer, in order to avoid plant spoilage. Even the direct stay with active radiators can quickly cause problems. Spider mites, for example, prefer this dry environment and infest the already weakened houseplants.
In the cold winter months, the plant is unable to utilize nutrients. Therefore, from the beginning to the middle of September, stop the supply of fertilizer. Casting will continue, but at irregular intervals. First check the soil before adding water. If the uppermost substrate layer has dried off noticeably, you must re-pour. Incidentally, it is not uncommon for the plant to lose some of the foliage in winter. If the location is bright, the temperatures are right and the root ball does not dry out, the plant produces new leaves in spring.
Diseases and pests
Only a few pests can be dangerous to the red leaf. Scale insects and spider mites do not stop at the exotic plant. The only a few millimeters large spider mites can already effectively keep them away by simple precautions:
  • Avoid proximity to heat sources.
  • Ensure high humidity.
  • Water plants regularly.
Scale insects are more persistent. It is often recommended to remove the animals by mechanical means. This is not recommended. Because the female shield lice harbor the eggs under their shell. If you want to scratch away the insects, the offspring is usually distributed over the plant over a large area. Bring out a diluted broth of nettles or soapy water to control the pests.
Conclusion of the editorship
The three-master flower is an interestingly colored houseplant and makes relatively few demands on the hobby gardener. While Tradescantia still has its fascinating leafy texture in the early years, it fades with age. The slack drooping shoots of older plants are also anything but decorative. To avoid this problem, you should regularly "rejuvenate" the red leaf with cuttings.
Worth knowing about Tradescantia pallida soon
  • The leaves of the red leaf are a bright red color and are covered with fine hairs. In a sunny place, the red shines even stronger.
  • But if the plant is too shady, bright red leaves quickly turn pale green leaves.
  • The flowers of the red leaf are pink to pale pink and in their youth, the plant has a straight and solid growth.
  • As the sapling gets older, the shoots get longer and look for their way over the edge of the pot.
Tip: The Tradescantia pallidam Setcreasea pallida is therefore best made in a flower basket, so that the shoots can develop fully. It is important that you do not cultivate the plant for too long, because as it grows older, it quickly becomes unsightly and so you should provide for offshoots as quickly as possible.
  • The preferred location of the red leaf is sunny and dry. The temperatures do not matter too much.
  • It likes to spend the winter in a bit warmer place, but if you are cold, you may prefer the red leaf.
  • The red leaf does not need much care. It is best if you rarely pour them. The humus should never completely dry out.
  • Fertilization takes place every 14 days with half of the commonly used fertilizer.
  • If you fertilize them too much, the red leaves turn into simple green leaves.
  • In the spring, the red leaf should be repotted, this one uses normal potting soil.
  • To successfully make offshoots, one uses cuttings of the red leaf.
  • For this purpose, one cuts off the shoots a piece with a length of 2 cm.
  • This is then allowed to dry for 2 days, then to give it in a mixture of peat and sand.
  • To achieve a dense growth as possible, you simply give several cuttings in a pot.

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