Pink furry tradescantia, part of the cerinthoides family of cultivar

Tradescantia pink furry and its confusion

Jumping straight into this next blog with a little bit of information on tradescantia pink furry. I received two spiderwort plants that looked very similar. I got them both from different sellers and they were listed as different houseplants. Now this is where knowledge really does begin to pay off, and I was very much in the dark at the time of purchasing.

These two plants I received were described as firstly tradescantia pink furry. And the second was named variegated blossfeldiana. I have been keeping both plants in separate rooms, the pink furry upstairs in my south-facing bedroom window. While the variegated blossfeldiana has been in my living room on the coffee table. But I have noticed that the two tradescantias look and feel very much the same.

Pink furry tradescantia on south facing window, flowering
Pink furry tradescantia on south-facing window, flowering

Variegated blossfeldiana tradescantia
Variegated blossfeldiana tradescantia or pink furry?

Both have light pink and darker pink streaks along the leaves. Both have thicker stems than your average wandering jew plant, and most importantly, they are both very hairy or furry on the underside of the leaves. One is more vivid in colour, but I believe this is down to the location that it has been kept in which is in most direct sunlight. (Although the sun hasn’t been shining much this spring in the UK).

So are pink furry and variegated blossfeldiana the same thing?

Well, the truth of the matter in short is…yes! I have been doing some serious research in the last twenty-four hours, and it’s sent me around the houses of information overload for these inch plants. There is so much information out there, but not all of it seems accurate or correct. Now for reference, this is my personal blog, so please don’t hold me against any information that might not be the whole truth. But this is what I can work out for myself on this cultivar.

Now the long answer would be more complicated than the short. But it is a fact that pink furry is the correct name for the cultivar which we are talking about. Variegated blossfeldiana however, is a vague and unhelpful description that is rather outdated. And it can be used to describe many different cultivars of tradescantia of the same family grouping. So yes both of the plants I have are the same, but they are both pink furry, and neither is technically variegated blossfeldiana.

Tradescantia pink furry, different in colour due to lighting offered to both plants.
Tradescantia pink furry, different in colour due to lighting offered to both plants.

How to identify a pink furry tradescantia

There are a few different characteristics that make this cultivar a pink furry, but the main one is that it is furry. The correct name that this family of tradescantia belongs to is Cerinthoides. This family of inch plants includes the likes of nanouk too, which is very similar to the pink furry, except for the furry or hairy underside of the leaf.

Close up of pink furry tradescantia cerinthoides underside of leaf which gives it it's characteristic name
Close-up of pink furry tradescantia cerinthoides underside of the leaf which gives it its characteristic name

Close up of pink furry tradescantia cerinthoides underside of leaf which gives it it's characteristic name
The pink furry underside of the leaf, clearly the fine hairs are visible

They also have thicker stems than that of other tradescantia family relatives. If you have one of these or a tradescantia from this family you’ll see that the stems are wider, and more rigid and solid than that of other cultivars.

The leaves themselves are larger on average than some of the other spiderworts, but this is more in proportion to their stems. And they are thicker to the touch. Where some leaves feel delicate and small on other cultivars of tradescantia, the pink furry has a more solid and authoritative stand about it.

The tradescantia itself needs plenty of sunlight. This helps to keep the beautiful colours coming through as the houseplant thrives, and as you can see from the photos above, there is a clear difference between the same tradescantia pink furry getting lots of light, and not so much. Bright indirect light is always the best, but I do leave some on windowsills at this time of year in the UK as the sun isn’t out enough or bright enough to damage the plant too much.

The flowers on this tradescantia

The flowers on this tradescantia have pink tips with white flowers once they open up. They really are pretty once the whole plant gets into unison and there is a budding success of extra colour on this already stunning plant.

And as you can see even around the flowers themselves there is the velvety furry coating that is iconic for this wandering jew plant.

Keeping the two plants together

So now that I know these two tradescantias are the same house plant. I’m going to put them into the same area of brightness to see if the paler of the two will start to brighten up. I will eventually pot them up together with them being the same cultivar, but it will be interesting to see if the colours do come back out more vividly first. This way I know for sure that they can brighten up before I mix them together and don’t see the effect so much.

Pink furry tradescantia
Pink furry tradescantia

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Pink Furry Tradescantia In All Its Glory

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