The common names of this plant, oyster plant, cradle lily, and Moses in the bulrushes, arise from the unusual arrangement of the flower bracts, which are paired in the shape of a boat, with the small, white, 3-petaled flowers in the middle.
These are set amid a loose rosette of lance shaped, semi succulent leaves, which are dark green or dark blue-green above, purple beneath, atop a short, stout stem. T.s. ‘Vittata’ (syn. T.s. ‘Variegata’) has leaves striped cream above, deep purple beneath. T. spathacea originates in southern Mexico, Belize, and Guatemala.
Size: Spread 18 in. (45 cm).
Light: Indirect sunlight.
Temperature: Normal room.
Moisture: Keep moist from spring to fall, drier in winter.
Feeding: Use standard liquid fertilizer every two weeks in spring and summer.
Propagation: Remove offsets from the base of the plant after flowering.
Special needs: It cannot tolerate drafts or dry air, so place it on a tray of moist pebbles.