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» Articles » Plants » Wandering Jew: Wonderful Houseplant

Wandering Jew: Wonderful Houseplant

by Douglas L. Bishop on 3/4/2012 11:57

Here we go again—telling you about another attractive houseplant that’s really easy to start and really undemanding in its growth requirements.

Presenting the Wandering Jew!

With slender elongated leaves of green and purplish coloration, the Wandering Jew plant has its own unique appearance that’s a little bit different from any other houseplant you may have in your collection.

If you don’t already have a start of Wandering Jew, buy a small plant at your garden center (really inexpensive) or get a start from a gardening friend (even cheaper!).

New plants are easily started from cuttings that will quickly root if placed in water or into a loose mixture of peat and clean organic potting medium (dip the cuttings into a bit of rooting hormone before inserting into the soil mixture).

The growth habit of the Wandering Jew lends itself perfectly to establishment and presentation in a hanging container (as in “wandering”—trailing, get it?!?).

If you do have access to cuttings as you start your pot of Wandering Jew, be sure to add several cuttings to the pot. And space them around much of the top surface of the soil so that as the plant grows and begins to trail over the edges, you will have a full and nicely balanced hanging plant.

Try to keep the soil evenly moist but not to the point of soaking, as too much watering or water standing in the tray will cause the roots to rot.

In terms of lighting requirements, the Wandering Jew will do well in filtered or indirect sunlight but will scorch if given too much direct sunlight.

If your patio is partially shaded, this might be a great place to display your hanging basket of Wandering Jew outdoors for the warm summer months.

However, if the deck receives too much full sun, then placing the potted plant on a stand near a window indoors might be a good idea—but not too close to a heating or cooling air duct as the moving air will tend to dry out and wither the leaves of your Wandering Jew.

Feed your potted plant a mild plant food throughout the spring and summer growing season to assure continuous and hardy leaf and stem development.

If conditions are good, you may also be treated to some colorful (pinkish-purple) little blooms on your Wandering Jew

Discontinue fertilizing your plant as the growing season winds down.

And, at the end of the summer, this may be a good time to cut back your plant in preparation for over-wintering indoors, especially if your plant has become too large and bushy (also, this is a good way to get fresh cuttings for starting new plants).

If you’re a really adventurous gardener and want to plant some Wandering Jew into your outdoor gardening areas, the plant actually makes a very adequate and attractive ground cover. Just remember that it won’t withstand severe winter freezing conditions.

So, there you have it. If you’ve ever wondered about Wandering Jew, wonder no more—just wander on down to the garden center and get a start of this wonderful plant!

Thanks, you’ve been a great audience!

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