Tradescantia tricolor is an herbaceous perennial hailing from the Caribbean, Central America, South America, and Mexico. It is kept as a houseplant and is commonly called “Wandering Jew”. The plant is a member of the Commelinaceae plant family.
Striped Wandering Jew is a fast grower and typically attains a height of 6″ to 9″ inches with a spread of 1′ or 2′ feet. The genus name, Tradescantia, refers to John Tradescant, who was a gardener and botanist during the 17th Century. The specific epithet, tricolor, refers to the plants’ coloration. Tradescantia is a genus of 75 species of herbaceous perennial wildflowers in the family Commelinaceae, native to the New World from southern Canada to northern Argentina, including the West Indies. Members of the genus are known by the common names spiderwort or Indian paint.