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While a name like spiderwort may be misleading, this resilient perennial should have a home in everyone’s garden. With slender, graceful foliage and bright jewel-tone blossoms, spiderworts are easy to use in any garden design. These plants may not have the showiest blooms, but they certainly make up for it with quantity. They are also extremely forgiving, and have no problem multiplying.
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Part Sun, Shade, Sun
Under 6 inches to 3 feet
8 to 36 inches wide, depending on variety
garden plans for Spiderwort
With their simple foliage and small flowers, spiderworts are great companions to many other plants. The flowers of spiderwort are generally three petals, which are born at the tips of foliage stems, and often in clusters. Usually just a few blooms in each cluster are open at once, and all of the blooms are only open for a single day. Luckily, there are generally many buds per stalk, and the bloomtime can last up to three months.
Spiderwort Care Must-Knows
Spiderworts are pretty simple plants that do not need a lot of special care. Native to the Western Hemisphere, there are a large variety of spiderworts on the market. With tropical and perennial options, there are many different spiderworts to choose from. Luckily, general care of these plants is fairly universal.
Spiderworts aren't too picky when it comes to exposure. Many varieties are just as happy in part shade as they are in full sun. A few even prefer part shade, especially when protected from the hot afternoon sun. There are even some species that will do just fine in full shade.
Most spiderworts prefer to be planted in saturated, well-drained soil. Some species can handle drought much better than others and can even do fine in consistently drier soils. In very dry soils, especially in the summer, plants may go dormant, which can commonly happen in southern climates with hot summers. Foliage is generally the first thing to decline, becoming yellowed and limp. When this happens, plants can be cut back to the ground. Come fall and cooler temperatures, many species of spiderwort will happily begin again, sending up new shoots and sometimes new blooms.
Despite the ease of growth with spiderworts, there are a few things to note when you are planting them. Spiderworts are susceptible to leaf spot diseases, and once they begin to get it, plants start to decline. Luckily, this generally will not kill the plants, and as long as foliage is removed, the next re-sprouting should be clean. Spiderworts also tend to be aggressive seeders, which in some garden settings may become a nuisance. These seedlings can easily be removed, and by deadheading spent blooms, you can prevent aggressive seeding.