The Tradescantia zebrina, also known as the zebra plant, has its origins in Central and South America. It grows in its natural habitat in the moist and warm forests. The species has been introduced and naturalised in various regions around the world including several Pacific islands, Australia and parts of Africa.
This plant is a perennial creeping plant that stands out due to its purple, green and silver leaves with stripes, giving it its common name 'zebra plant'. The leaves are lanceolate and can grow up to 15 cm long and 3 cm wide. The plant produces small three-petalled purple flowers, but flowering is sporadic. The plant often climbs or hangs, making it popular as a hanging plant.
The Tradescantia zebrina is relatively easy to care for. It grows best in semi-shade to light sun and prefers a moist, well-drained soil. Regular watering is important, but the plant can tolerate a short period of drought. To maintain compact growth, it is recommended to prune the plant. This can be done at any time of the year without adverse effects on the plant.