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Floristic Inventory of the Florida Keys Database Online

Tradescantia spathacea Sw.
Oysterplant, Moses-in-the-cradle, Boatlily

Tradescantia spathacea
Copyright by: Keith A. Bradley

Family: Commelinaceae

Group: Monocot

Substrate: Terrestrial

Habit: Herb

Perennation: Perennial

Native Range: Mexico and Guatemala; cultivated and now a widespread weed.

Map of South Florida Locations

SOUTH FLORIDA Occurrence: Present

SOUTH FLORIDA Native Status: Not Native, Naturalized

SOUTH FLORIDA Cultivated Status: Cultivated

FLORIDA KEYS Occurrence: Present

FLORIDA KEYS Native Status: Not Native, Naturalized

Map of Florida Keys Locations

Florida Keys History and Distribution: Not reported for the Florida Keys by John Kunkel Small in 1913. Widely cultivated and highly invasive throughout the Florida Keys.

Other data on Tradescantia spathacea available from :


Tradescantia spathacea has been reported from the following 16 conservation areas in the FLORIDA KEYS :
Occurrence Native Status
Attwood Addition, Indian Key Historic State Park Present Not Native, Naturalized
Bahia Honda State Park Present Not Native, Naturalized
Biscayne National Park, Florida Keys Section Present Not Native, Naturalized
Blue Heron Hammock, Florida Keys Wildlife and Environmental Area Present Not Native, Naturalized
Crocodile Lake National Wildlife Refuge Present Not Native, Naturalized
Curry Hammock State Park Present Not Native, Naturalized
Dagny Johnson Key Largo Hammocks Botanical State Park Present Not Native, Naturalized
Dove Creek Hammocks, Florida Keys Wildlife and Environmental Area Present Not Native, Naturalized
Dry Tortugas National Park Present Not Native, Naturalized
Great White Heron National Wildlife Refuge Present Not Native, Naturalized
John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park Present Not Native, Naturalized
Lake San Pedro Hammocks, Florida Keys Wildlife and Environmental Area Present Not Native, Naturalized
Little Torch Hammocks, Florida Keys Wildlife and Environmental Area Present Not Native, Cultivated Only
Long Key State Park Present Not Native, Naturalized
Snake Creek Hammocks, Florida Keys Wildlife and Environmental Area Present Not Native, Naturalized
Windley Key Fossil Reef Geological State Park Reported




Tradescantia spathacea has been reported for the following 3 habitats in THE FLORIDA KEYS :
Disturbed Upland
Pine Rockland
Rockland Hammock


All Images:

Tradescantia spathacea
Copyright by: Keith A. Bradley

Tradescantia spathacea
Copyright by: James Johnson, 2014
In habitat, Miramar Pineland Natural Area,
Broward County, Florida

Tradescantia spathacea
Copyright by: George Gann, 2017
In habitat, Lake Ida Parcel, Delray Beach, Florida

Tradescantia spathacea
Copyright by: Roger L. Hammer