For comprehensive information (e.g. nutrition, medicinal values, recipes, history, harvesting tips, etc.) Purslane PDF magazine.
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.
This nutritious weed has a distinctive thick, reddish stem and succulent, green leaves.
Purslane has yellow flowers that occur singly or in small terminal clusters. When fully open, each flower is about .5 cm(¼") across, consisting of five petals, two green sepals, numerous yellow stamens, and several pistils that appear together in the centre of the flower. These flowers open up for a few hours during bright sunny mornings. Purslane flowers bloom from mid-summer through the early fall and lasts about 1 to 2 months. Each flower is replaced by a seed capsule that splits open around the middle to release the numerous small, black seeds.