Gladys is Ned Tedford's pet plant and sole companion. "She" is a geranium in a plant pot, whom Ned often talks to during his lonely jobs.
Gladys is most closely related to an Americana Pink Zonal Geranium.
Being nothing but a flower, Gladys obviously doesn't talk back, but Ned often talks as if she has her own opinions and responses, though the flower waved, looking like “yes” and “no” head waves in Under Pressure and Slingshot.
First appearing with her owner in Slingshot, Gladys accompanied Ned on asteroid 21 Lutetia, where he worked (otherwise alone) on the Golvanna Mine. When a solar flare struck the asteroid and caused the mining drill to slip into the core, the resulting eruption pushed the asteroid onto a collision course with the Sun. Gladys and Ned were saved by Alan and Kayo in Thunderbird 3.
Gladys then appears in Under Pressure, when Ned's working on a heavy-metal extraction platform carrying toxic waste. When an onboard fire disables the vehicle's ability to steer, Thunderbird 4 is required to evacuate them. (Gordon Tracy, rightly, thought Ned was insane for talking to Gladys!) Along the bumpy ride in the extraction platform, Gladys would shake slightly, giving the impression of nodding or shaking her head in response to Ned's ramblings.
The Chaos Crew comes crashing into Ned's and Gladys' tranquil little world in Growing Pains - where Gladys faces mortal peril when a rogue plant-serum transforms her into Giant Gladys (!) - as John and Kayo rush to her and Ned's rescue...
- To date, Gladys is the only character to 'die' on screen, since she was regrettably destroyed during the events of Growing Pains, making her currently the only character International Rescue failed to save.