What's this grassy weed?

atlantisflygirl(6b)June 17, 2014

I just noticed these mixed in with my peonies. They're a little over a foot tall. When I tried to pull one up by the roots, it snapped off with very little pressure. There's a sticky sap that starts out clear but then turns deep purple. I got some on my fingers and it stained my skin.

At the top, you can see a cluster of buds. If I pinch them open, there's more sticky sap and little purple balls. I'll upload a pic of them next.

TIA for any help!

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Here are a couple of the buds with the sides pulled back.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 6:17PM
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sweet_betsy No AL Z7(7)


    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 7:09PM
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TulsaRose z7a, Tulsa OK(7a)

Tradescantia 'Spiderwort' is a pretty wildflower and when grown in the right conditions, makes a nice addition to a shade \ part-sun garden. Just thought I would get my positive comment in before others post the negatives. ;-)

Here is a link that might be useful: Tradescantia

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 7:53PM
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Only one of them gets negative comments (or only one should) and that is the smooth spiderwort (T. ohiensis). You can see the hairs on this one, so it is not that one.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 8:33PM
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Thanks so much everyone! They are very pretty so I definitely won't be pulling out any more. In researching them, I found this on the wikipage.

The cells of the stamen hairs of some Tradescantia are colored blue, but when exposed to sources of ionizing radiation such as gamma rays, the cells mutate and change color to pink; they are one of the few tissues known to serve as an effective bioassay for ambient radiation levels.


    Bookmark   June 18, 2014 at 5:22PM
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