Callisia from the Greek kallos meaning beauty and repens means spreading, creeping.

Also known as Bolivian Jew, Turtle Vine, Itsy Bitsy Inch Vine, Baby’s Tears, Creeping Inch Plant and Creeping Basket Plant.

It multiplies and spreads extremely quickly creating a mat of leaves that are green above and sometimes purple below with purple stems.

Self mulching, the carpet it produces is not too difficult to remove. Weed risk high due to its smothering, ground cover effect.

Photo: Robert Whyte


Commelinaceae are also known as the spiderwort family. The stems of these plants are generally well-developed, and often swollen at the nodes. Flowers are short-lived, lasting for a day or less.

Photo: Robert Whyte