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Botanical name: Siderasis fuscata
Synonmy: Tradescantia fuscata
Common name: Brown Spiderwort, Bear Ears Plant
Siderasis fuscata commonly called Brown Spiderwort or Bear Ears Plant is a small plant whose short bronze-colored leaves form a rosette and is a moisture-loving plant ideal for a terrarium.
The common name, 'Brown Spiderwort', is in reference to the bronze-colored leaves.
Brown Spiderwort can grow to a height of 1-1.5 ft and the leaves are only about 6-8 in. long. It bears attractive purple flowers about 1 in. across.
Siderasis fuscata is endemic to the State of Rio de Janeiro in Southeastern Brazil, though it is also naturalized on the Island of Java in Indonesia.
Photo Credit: Paldat
Brown Spiderwort (Siderasis fuscata) thrives in medium, indirect light away from direct sunshine, warm and humid conditions and moderately moist, well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter coupled with regular feeding during the growing season.
Siderasis fuscata requires pruning to keep the plant neat and to reduce pest and disease infestations. Repotting is only needed when the plant has become pot-bound. Keep reading for more on these growing conditions and how to achieve them.
Brown Spiderwort grows best medium, indirect light. Keep it away from direct sunshine as it can lead to scorching of the leaves.
Turn the pot regularly to ensure that the Bear Ears Plant receives light on all sides for uniform growth.
Siderasis fuscata can also grow under a grow light where the natural light is not sufficient.
Water Brown Spiderwort liberally during the growing season and allow the soil to dry out between waterings.
Decrease watering during the cold season to keep the soil slightly moist as growth is minimal at this time.
Ascertain the pot has a drainage hole to prevent the soil from getting soggy as it can lead to root-rot disease and eventual death of the plant.
Average warmth with a minimum 160C is ideal for Brown Spiderwort. A room temperature that is comfortable for you is ideal for this plant.
Keep the Siderasis fuscata away from cold draughts to prevent sudden changes in temperature as they can cause leaf drop.
Brown Spiderwort thrives in a high humidity environment. Set the pot on a wet pebble tray or use a cool mist humidifier to raise humidity. Read more on how to raise humidity for houseplants.
Mist the leaves regularly and clean them by damp-wiping with a soft cloth to get rid of dust as well as reduce infestation by pests.
You can also grow Siderasis fuscata in a terrarium as a high humidity can be maintained inside a terrarium.
Feed Brown Spiderwort with a balanced, liquid fertilizer every 3-4 weeks during the growing period for lush growth.
Do not feed the Siderasis fuscata during the cold season as growth is minimal and feeding at this time may lead to fertilizer burn and death of the plant.
Repot Brown Spiderwort during the growing season only when the plant has become pot-bound. Use a rich, free-draining soil and a pot one size larger than the current one.
Make sure that the pot has a drainage hole to prevent the soil from getting soggy as it can lead to root-rot disease and eventual death of the Bear Ears Plant.
The best soil for Brown Spiderwort should be rich in organic matter and free-draining to prevent it from getting soggy while providing the required nutrients.
Most multi-purpose potting mixes are ideal for this plant. Purchase quality Potting Mix for Siderasis fuscata online from Etsy.
Pruning Brown Spiderwort involves regular removal of dead foliage to maintain the plant neat and also reduce pest and disease infestations.
Brown Spiderwort (Siderasis fuscata) propagation can be done by plant division during the growing period.
Take out the Brown Spiderwort from its pot and carefully divide it into several sections. Ensure each section has adequate roots and at least one set of leaves.
Pot the sections in individual pots in free-draining soil.
Place the set up in a warm, well-lit place and maintain the soil moist until new growth emerges on the cuttings.
Allow the new Siderasis fuscata plants to be well established before transplanting after which you can begin routine care.
Photo Credit: Garden Explorer
Brown Spiderwort (Siderasis fuscata) problems indoors include shrivelled leaf tips, yellow leaves, spotted leaves, and pests. Read on for more on these problems, their remedies and solutions.
Brown and shrivelled leaf tips in Brown Spiderwort are caused by too dry air (low humidity) especially when the indoor temperatures are very high.
To increase humidity, set the pot on a wet pebble tray or use a cool mist humidifier.
Siderasis fuscata can also be grown in a terrarium as a high humidity can be maintained inside a terrarium.
Yellow and spotted leaves in Brwon Spiderwort are caused by underwatering causing too little moisture in the soil.
Water the Siderasis fuscata liberally during the growing season while allowing the top 1-2 in. of soil to dry out slightly between waterings.
Reduce watering during the cold season but do not allow the soil to dry out completely.
The common pests in Brown Spiderwort are Aphids and Spider Mites which are more common where the air is too dry (low humidity).
Isolate the affected plant to prevent spread to other houseplants and treat it with Neem oil to get rid of the pests.
Mist the leaves more regularly and clean them by damp-wiping with a soft cloth to reduce infestation by these pests.
Brown Spiderwort (Siderasis fuscata) is non-toxic to humans and pets. The plants are safe to grow indoors.