Portulaca, all the info

Portulaca, all the info

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Ornamental purslaneand purslane to eat. All the info on the ownership and cultivation of purslane flowers. Care, plant needs, seeds and tips on how to grow.

With the namePortulacareference is made to different plants, among these there are two distinct categories, one made of ornamental plants and the other made of weeds but which are good to eat and are suitable for many recipes.

Thereornamental purslane it offers colorful and abundant flowers. On the contrary, there are species of weed purslane that grow creeping in the garden. Purslane weed is really hard to get rid of but can be very useful in the kitchen.

Looking at the photo below, the difference between the two plants is more than evident! On the left, you will notice the species nicknamed "wild purslane“, On the right and in the photo above, the images of thepurslane flowers.

Wild purslane or purslane oleracea

Therewild purslane (botanical name of the species, portulaca oleracea) is one plant spontaneous that grows as a weed in the garden. While some horticulturists hate it, others love it for its beneficial properties and for its uses in the kitchen. It lends itself well to a large number of recipes and, like any noteworthy vegetable, is good for your health!

Even if ugly and annoying (it can infest the vegetable garden, garden and… alas, even the lawn), purslane oleracea has interesting properties.

Portulaca: properties and benefits of the plant

It would appear that thepurslaneis one of the best plant sources of omega-3 fatty acid and alpha-linolenic acid. If eaten raw, thepurslaneit would be able to bring a good protein content and water-soluble polysaccharides.

Betweenpropertymore interesting thanpurslane, figures its very high content of vitamin C, so much so that in the past it was used to fight itscurvyand urinary tract infections. Still in folk medicine and homeopathy, thepurslaneit is used as a mild remedy or adjuvant to prophylaxis for the prevention of heart attacks or to improve the immune system. To his property antiscorbutics are flanked by purifying and diuretic properties.

Grow wild purslane

Unlike its ornamental cousin which requires some extra attention, thepurslane weedit is very easy to propagate and does not require care for his cultivation. However, if you do not know where to find the plant, online mail order is available: on Amazon there are seeds of purslane selected for food, then to be used in vegetable salads, vegetables, rice salad or to prepare omelettes and rustic muffins.

Where to find thepurslane seeds? On “this Amazon page” it is possible to evaluate various offers.

Just a few warnings for sowing: since purslane can be very infesting, it is advisable to limit cultivation in pots or in a well-defined area of ​​the garden. Once widespread, purslane and its taproots will be difficult to remove from the garden and vegetable garden.

It is not recommended to cultivate the spontaneous purslane near a lawn to avoid future weeding treatments.

Please note: thepurslane sativait is nothing but a variety of the speciespurslane oleracea. All varieties of purslane oleracea they are edible, easy to grow and have the same nutritional properties.

Why is purslane bitter?

If you have grown purslane and, at the time of bringing it to the kitchen and using it in many recipes, you have noticed that the leaves are bitter, there are two solutions:

  • You neglected to water the plant. Extreme drought tends to return hard leaves.
  • You have collected old leaves, in fact the softer shoots are better suited, especially when you intend to use the raw plant.

Portulaca: recipe

How do you eat purslane?

  • The tenderest leaves and shoots can be added raw to any salad.
  • It is possible to use purslane as a single vegetable as a side dish, to be served raw seasoned with a drizzle of oil and salt.
  • It can be used to enrich tomato bruschetta with finely chopped garlic, a drizzle of oil and salt.

Can purslane be cooked? Of course, even if raw it provides more nutrients. It can be used in recipes for stews, minestrone, soups and also to enrich legume dishes. An idea? A good pasta with chickpeas enriched with purslane leaves. It can be added to any creamy recipe, including the samevelvety purslane!

For details onnutritional properties, on benefits and onrecipesof thepurslane oleracea, we invite you to visit the dedicated page: purslane, properties and recipes. Now let's move on tocultivation of purslane ornamental plant.

Ornamental purslane

Thereornamental purslane it offers colorful and abundant flowers. Purslane weed is really hard to get rid of but can be very useful in the kitchen. Let's start with iornamental purslane flowersand with its cultivation.

There ornamental purslaneit is a rustic plant that produces colorful blooms from late spring to early autumn. For ornamental purslane we generally speak of purslane grandiflora, purslane pilosa, purslane umbraticolata… And hybrid varieties marketed for the beauty of the selected flowers cross by cross.

There ornamental purslaneit is among the ideal plants to grow in pots and tubs, on terraces and balconies, as well as on the edge of the garden.

It does not fear summer, on the contrary, it loves scorching heat and grows well in full sun. The particularity of the purslane? The flowers open only in the presence of high brightness, when the weather is cloudy, they open very late in the morning and close again early in the evening.

The flowers of the purslane they have a diameter of 10 cm in the Portulaca pilosa and of about 4-6 cm in the umbraticola one, a species that also includes double-flowered varieties.

Flowering varies in color: from red to yellow, passing through various shades of orange. White, lilac and fuchsia. Some varieties carry the two-colored flower, as is the case with purslane umbraticola in the Duna Red Flame, Duna Purple Cross, Duna Volcano and Peggy bicolor varieties (the latter of the species purslane pilosa).

Portulaca: care of the plant

There purslane is native to Asia, the flowers are extremely thin so they seem to be made of tissue paper. The ideal temperatures that ensure vigorous growth range from 26 to 32 degrees. The vegetation stops below 6-5 degrees: the plant does not tolerate the cold which in extreme cases can lead to death. Excessive humidity also damages the plant which adapts better to hot and drought conditions.

There purslane it is grown well in pots but also in the garden, in flower beds the plants should be placed at a distance of 30 cm from each other to allow the vegetation to develop at its best.

For the cultivation of purslane very sandy soil must be used, which leaves no room for water stagnation. If you decide to cultivate it in the ground, you will need to make sure that the soil is well drained to avoid rotting.

In this regard, you can add coarse sand in order to facilitate the drainage of excess water. The plant must be irrigated every 2-3 days and in poor soils, it must be fertilized once a week with a water-soluble fertilizer.

How to grow purslane, a flowering plant

What does it take to grow flowering purslane?

  • Fertile soil or garden soil and fertilizer
  • Pots with a diameter of 30 cm, for growing in flower beds the distance between one plant and another is 30 cm.
  • Purslane seeds or seedlings.

Purslane seeds and plants are easy to find at well-stocked garden centers. On Amazon you can find theornamental purslaneof any variety, with single or double flower. For all the photos of the flowering purslane, please visit the Amazon page dedicated toseeds of this flower.

Purslane weed, how to eliminate it

The speciespurslane oleraceait is easily recognized: it is a creeping herbaceous plant with small, double and waxed leaves. Those who do not cultivate it deliberately and find it in the garden will have to work hard to eliminate it. Purslane weed is the same spontaneous plant that you can use in the kitchen, so before eliminating it, consider the alternative: you have a plant that grows spontaneously, which is good for your health and that you can use in many recipes.

If you haven't thought about it, you can find out how to eliminate this weed by reading the article: How to eliminate purslane.

Video: How to Grow Moss Rose From Seed. Planting Portulaca In Pots (August 2022).