The inch-wide flowers of tradescantia occidentalis
are unusual and distinctive, formed of three ovate, bluish-purple petals around six thick, hairy, purple stamens, topped by bright yellow anthers. Underneath the petals are three pointed green sepals, which have a light glandular hair covering. Flowers are produced in small clusters (up to 10 heads) along the upper portion of the stem, but only one or two are in bloom at any one time. On hot days they tend to open in the morning and wither during the afternoon. Two leaf like bracts grow from the base of the flower cluster, several inches long. Stem leaves are long and thin, hairless, with several lengthwise veins. Leaf edges are often folded up.