Edible Plants

Purslane (Portulaca)

Portulaca oleracea

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IMPORTANT: a similar plant named "hairy-stemmed spurge" is poisonous. Click here for more information.
Purslane is a succulent annual trailing plant that grows in many countries because it thrives in poor soil. It can be eaten as a cooked vegetable and is great to use in salads, soups, stews or any dish you wish to sprinkle it over. Purslane is antibacterial, antiscorbutic, depurative, diuretic and febrifuge. The leaves are a very rich source of omega-3 fatty acids which prevents heart attacks and strengthens the immune system.

Fields of NutritionFields of Nutrition has medicinal benefits and vitamin/mineral content of Purslane (click here).

Distinguishing Features: This nutritious weed has a distinctive thick, reddish stem and succulent, green leaves.

Leaves: Leaves are spoon-like in shape and are succulent (fleshy).

Height: Purslane tends to be trailing plant and can grow to 10 cm in height.

Habitat: Purslane is often found thriving in the cracks of sidewalks and driveways even during summer's heat. It often pops up in container gardens, flowerbeds, gardens, fields, waste ground and roadside.

Edible parts: Leaves, stems and flower buds.

Similar plants: Hairy-Stemmed Spurge, which is poisonous. Click here for more information. Poisonous Plant.

Wild Food Recipes: Chicken Weed Wrap, Fried or Baked Purslane, North African Style Purslane, Nutricized Purslane, Purslane Smoothie and Popsicles, Sweet Pickled Purslane Stems


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