I got this transplant from my mother in law, who does not know what it is either.**I live in Indianapolis Indiana, and this plant got very large this year and fell over with no new growth in the center.* I cut it*in to four and transplanted it*aroud my yard.* Know I would like to know if I can cut it back hard to encourage new uniform growth.
Its blooms open in the morning and seem to close up during the day.
This is tradescantia ohiensis or T virginiana or T bracteata, commonly known as spiderwort.* Google spiderwort for images. Those three tradescantias are part of a fairly large family, but those three look alike.
Not that you are interested, but it's edible. Tastes like grass to me, not very interesting no matter what time of year. Do not try eating it unless you are very experienced at crosschecking and know the environment well.
You can cut it down pretty severely and it will grow back bushier, but it will never be a lovely trimmed shrub, never a topiary or bonsai or other severely pruned delight.
It delights in moist lawns with a good deal of sun. It grows in direct sun where I live, but prefers moist yet well drained road sides with partial sun. I have some growing in poor sand in dense shade right now that's a little tired looking. It will reseed itself and I imagine in your area it is strictly an annual.
Thanks so much for the info.* I will research more on it.* But it did make it through a pretty icy winter here and grew huge.* Well see how the transplants do. I f did find it very intersting to know its edible.* I am a chef and might experiment with it a bit after in know its safe.