This South African native is evergreen in the Tropical South; light frosts will kill the leaves in the other listed zones, but the roots survive. Forms 1- to 3-ft.-high clumps of soft, curving leaves like long, broad grass blades. Both 'Variegatum' and 'Vittatum' have white-striped leaves. Flowers about 12 in. long, in loose, leafy-tipped spikes held above foliage. Greatest attraction: miniature duplicates of mother plant, complete with root, at end of curved stems (as with offsets of strawberry plants). These can be cut off and potted individually.
Spider plant is a good choice for hanging baskets. To use as a ground cover where it is winter-hardy, set 2 ft. apart in diamond pattern; plants will fill in the area in that same year.