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Abraham, Isaac and Jacob

Trachystemon orientalis

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Boraginaceae (Borage)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
40 centimetres tall
Gardens, roadsides, woodland.

Purple, 5 petals
Violet-blue flowers in leafy clusters. The mauve-coloured stamens are prominent. Flowers measure between 9 and 12mm across.
Ridged nutlets.
A hairy, creeping perennial with upright stems and rough, heart-shaped leaves. The large leaves are stalked and have a sandpaper-like texture. A garden escape species which sometimes naturalises in the wild in the UK.
Other Names:
Abraham-Isaac-Jacob, Early-flowering Boarge, Oriental Borage.
Frequency (UK):
Rarely seen  

Other Information


Abraham-Isaac-Jacob or Early Spiderwort, is a perennial plant that belongs to the borage family. It is native to the eastern Mediterranean region and is known for its attractive blue-violet flowers. The plant is relatively easy to grow and is often used as a groundcover in gardens. It prefers moist, well-draining soil and thrives in partial shade to full sun. Trachystemon orientalis is generally hardy and can tolerate a wide range of conditions, although it may be prone to pests such as slugs and snails. The plant is known for its medicinal properties and has been used traditionally to treat a variety of ailments. However, more research is needed to fully understand its effects and to determine the safety and effectiveness of using it medicinally.


Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are not biblical figures, but rather a common name for a flowering plant species known as Trachystemon orientalis.

Trachystemon orientalis, commonly known as "Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob," is a perennial plant that belongs to the borage family. It is native to the eastern Mediterranean and western Asia, but can now be found in many parts of Europe and North America.

The plant is named after the biblical figures Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob because of the blue and white flowers that resemble the traditional garb worn by Jewish men. It typically grows to be about 12 inches tall, and has leaves that are hairy and slightly lobed. The flowers bloom in the spring and early summer, and are a beautiful blue color with a white center.

Trachystemon orientalis is a hardy plant that prefers well-drained soil and full sun to partial shade. It is an excellent choice for a rock garden or along the edge of a wooded area. The plant is also deer resistant, which makes it a great choice for a garden in an area where deer are a problem.

Trachystemon orientalis is relatively easy to care for and maintain. It should be watered regularly and fertilized with a balanced fertilizer during the growing season. It can also be divided every few years to keep it healthy and promote new growth.

Another unique feature of Trachystemon orientalis is its ability to self-seed, which means that it can spread and grow in new areas with little effort from the gardener. This can be beneficial for naturalizing a garden or for filling in bare spots in the landscape. However, it can also become invasive if not controlled properly. Gardeners can prevent this by regularly removing spent flowers and seed heads or by planting the plant in an area where it will not have the opportunity to spread.

In addition to its ornamental value, Trachystemon orientalis has also been used for medicinal purposes. The plant's roots and leaves have been traditionally used to treat a variety of ailments, including rheumatism, wounds, and skin conditions. It has also been used as a diuretic and to promote lactation in breastfeeding mothers. However, it should be noted that more scientific research is needed to confirm the effectiveness and safety of using Trachystemon orientalis for medicinal purposes.

In addition to its ornamental and medicinal uses, Trachystemon orientalis also has ecological significance. The plant is a food source for several species of butterflies and moths, and its flowers are a popular source of nectar for bees and other pollinators. The plant can also provide cover and habitat for small mammals and birds. By planting this species in your garden, you can not only add beauty to your landscape, but you can also contribute to the conservation of pollinators and other wildlife.

Another great feature of Trachystemon orientalis is its adaptability to different types of soils and weather conditions. It can grow in sandy, clay, and loamy soils, and can tolerate both dry and wet conditions. It is also tolerant of some degree of shade, making it a great option for those gardens that have limited sunlight.

In conclusion, Trachystemon orientalis, or Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, is an attractive and versatile perennial plant that can add beauty to any garden. It has a number of benefits such as being deer resistant, self-seeding, medicinal use and ecological significance. It is also adaptable to different types of soils and weather conditions, making it a great option for many different types of gardens. With proper care and attention, this plant can thrive and provide years of enjoyment.