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Tradescantia Nanouk: Care Tips and Propagation Guide

Tradescantia Nanouk is a gorgeous indoor plant that’s easy to grow and care for. With upright stems adorned with multicolored, striped leaves, this plant will surely add color to your indoor space. 

Under optimal conditions, your Tradescantia produces adorable white or yellow star-shaped blooms. Plus, it’s a trailing perennial whose stems can grow up to 20 inches long, making it an excellent hanging plant. 

Learn the proper techniques to grow and propagate your Tradescantia, including helpful tips on treating common diseases affecting the plant. 

Tradescantia Nanouk: Plant Description

Tradescantia Nanouk, also known as Fantasy Venice, is a delightful houseplant with thick, fleshy leaves with pink, purple, and green-colored striped patterns.

Since it’s a hardy plant, it can be grown outdoors, especially in warm climates. Here are more information about this plant: 

Common name Tradescantia albiflora ‘Nanouk’
Botanical Name Fantasy Venice
Genus/Family Spiderwort/Commelinaceae
Plant Type Perennial
Place of Origin Netherlands
Hardiness Zones 10-12
Flowering/Growing Season Spring through Fall
Soil pH 5.5 to 6.5

Is Tradescantia Nanouk Toxic?

Plant variants from the Tradescantia family are known to be toxic to humans and pets—and the Nanouk variant is no exception. In fact, one study suggests that Tradescantia plants belong to the fourth class of toxicity. 

The sap or leaves of plants belonging to this class cause skin rash or irritation. That said, ingesting or coming into contact with these plant components can cause mouth irritation, diarrhea, vomiting, and contact dermatitis.

You should keep your plants away from reach, hang them in a pot, or spray them with pet repellent to discourage curious pets. 

How to Care For Your Tradescantia Nanouk

How to Care For Your Tradescantia Nanouk

Tradescantia Nanouk is a low-maintenance plant ideal for busy people. Like most houseplants, they’re beneficial in purifying indoor air by removing harmful chemicals like formaldehyde. 

They also boost your mood, promote productivity, and reduce stress. Given that fact, properly caring for your Fantasy Venice is crucial to ensure longevity and maximize its benefits.  

Follow these care tips to create an ideal environment for your Tradescantia and ensure optimal growth:

1. Plant in Well-Draining Soil

The Nanouk variety prefers well-draining, acidic soil, so planting them in a regular potting mix or sandy soil is effective. You can also add perlite, pumice, or orchid bark to your soil mix for better drainage. Peat moss is an excellent addition, too.

2. Water Regularly

These plants thrive best in moist but not soggy or dripping wet soil. At the same time, avoid excessive watering as it encourages root rots. 

That said, you should only water the plant when the first inch of the soil is completely dry.

To water your Nanouk, pour water directly into the soil and not overhead, then wait until the water drains out of the pot’s holes. It’s also best to avoid using water sprays to prevent the leaves or stems from getting wet. 

How to Bottom Water

Another technique for watering your plant is bottom watering. The main advantage of this technique is it prevents water from accumulating in the plant’s foliage. 

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Ensure that your plant is contained in a pot with draining holes.
  2. Place the pot on a tray or plate and fill it with water. 
  3. Allow the water to seep into the plant’s soil through the draining holes for up to 10 minutes. 

3. Expose to Indirect Light

Tradescantia Nanouk loves bright, indirect light; up to eight hours of indirect sunlight exposure daily is ideal. 

When grown indoors, placing your plant by an east or north-facing window that gets filtered sunlight throughout the day will favor optimal growth. 

4. Maintain Temperature and Humidity at Optimal Levels

Tradescantias thrive best in daytime temperatures of up to 75°F, but they prefer lower temperatures at night (50 to 65°F). 

While these perennials are not sensitive to humidity changes, they grow best in humid environments, typically between 40 and 60%.

Since Fantasy Venice loves humidity, a bathroom environment that gets moist air throughout the day works for them, too. 

5. Repot Overgrown Tradescantia

It’s best to repot your plant once the roots are starting to emerge from the draining holes. Transferring them to a much bigger pot that can accommodate its root system is essential. 

It’s also best to repot your Tradescantia during its active growing season. As long as the soil from your previous pot is still in good condition, not infested by pests or diseases, and not emitting a rotten odor, it’s safe to reuse it.

Does Tradescantia Nanouk Need Fertilizer?

Fertilizing your plant is optional as it doesn’t require as much nutrients as a hardy grower. However, fertilizing can help accelerate flower growth. 

Using a standard fertilizer to feed your plant during its growing season is one option to consider. You should also dilute it to half-strength and incorporate it at least once every two weeks or monthly. 

Common Issues and Diseases Affecting Tradescantia Nanouk 

Does Tradescantia Nanouk Need Fertilizer

Improper care or watering can result in the following diseases and conditions:

  1. Fading of leaf pigment: Your Tradescantia’s leaves losing their colorful streaks indicates it’s not receiving enough light. 
  2. Yellowing leaves: Leaf discoloration is a telltale sign of overwatering, so adjust your watering schedule accordingly. 
  3. Wilting or droopy leaves: Water deficiency is the major cause of wilting leaves; you’ll also notice browning around the edges of the leaves. Root rot is another cause of droopy leaves.
  4. Root Rots and Fungal Infection: Overwatering makes the soil soggy, and excessive moisture is the ideal breeding ground for fungi, which causes rots. 
  5. Spider Mites and Aphids: These pests are common perpetrators to indoor plants, but you don’t need harsh chemicals or insecticides to ward them off. Neem oil is an inexpensive but natural pesticide to combat these pests. 

Propagating Tradescantia Nanouk: A Step-By-Step Guide

Propagating Tradescantia is easy and will take a few steps. You’ll only need a pair of clean or sterilized pruning shears and a transparent glass container half-filled with water.

After gathering all needed materials, follow these steps:

  1. Select a stem with few leaves and use clean, pruning shears to cut it from its base. Make a diagonal cut. 
  2. Remove the leaves from the lower half of the stem, leaving the top foliage. 
  3. Immerse the cut stem in a glass container with water and ensure the upper portion with leaves isn’t submerged. 
  4. Place the propagated plant in an area with plenty of indirect light. Avoid exposing it to direct sunlight as it is too harsh for the plant. After a few weeks, new roots will start to appear. 
  5. Don’t forget to replace the water every time it gets murky. 
  6. Once the roots reach two inches in length, they’re ready to transfer to the soil. 

You can also propagate your Fantasy Venice by planting the cut stem directly into the soil. Just follow the mentioned steps, but use a pot with soil instead of a jar filled with water. 

Watering your soil-propagated Tradescantia is vital as well. Use the same watering techniques for grown plants. 

Conclusion

While Tradescantia Nanouk is beneficial in improving indoor air quality, it can be toxic to humans and pets, so it’s best to keep them somewhere out of reach.

For optimal growth, keep them in humid and bright areas with plenty of filtered sunlight. Since they prefer well-draining soil, you can use a regular potting mix and add a dash of perlite or pumice to improve water drainage. 

Meanwhile, most issues and diseases (root rots and yellowing leaves) affecting these plants are due to improper watering techniques. Given that fact, avoid over or underwatering and only water your plant when the upper inch of the soil is completely dry.

Ruthie H. Adams

I embrace life with joy, seeking the sparkle in ordinary moments. Despite being far from a success story, we can still live fabulously.
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