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Portulaca oleracea (Common Purslane)


Scientific Name

Portulaca oleracea L.

Common Names

Common Purslane, Little Hogweed, Portulaca-Weed, Purslane, Pigweed, Pursley, Moss Rose, Wild Portulaca


Portulaca oleracea subsp. oleracea, Portulaca neglecta, Portulaca retusa, Portulaca consanguinea, Portulaca fosbergii, Portulaca hortensis, Portulaca intermedia, Portulaca latifolia, Portulaca marginata, Portulaca officinarum, Portulaca olitoria, Portulaca parvifolia, Portulaca pilosa var. marginata, Portulaca retusa, Portulaca sativa, Portulaca suffruticosa, Portulaca sylvestris

Scientific Classification

Family: Portulacaceae
Subfamily: Portulacarioideae
Genus: Portulaca


Portulaca oleracea is a low-growing, spreading and mat-forming succulent up to 2 feet (60 cm) long. The stems are smooth, reddish, mostly prostrate. The leaves are alternate, green, fleshy, oval to spoon-shaped with reddish margins, clustered at stem joints and ends. The yellow flowers are up to 0.25 inch (6 mm) across and have 5 regular parts. Fowers open singly at the center of the leaf cluster for only a few hours on sunny mornings. Seeds are formed in a tiny pod, which opens when the seeds are mature.


USDA hardiness zone 6a to 11b: from −5 °F (−20.6 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Portulaca plants tolerate many kinds of soil but prefer sandy, well-drained soil and love the full sunlight. These plants are excellent for high heat and drought tolerance, and will seed and spread themselves very well. Some control methods may be needed to keep Portulaca plants from becoming invasive to areas where they are not wanted. These wonderful plants do spread easily and very well.

Portulaca species such as Purslane require no attention at all when growing and flowering; however you should remove them from the garden before Portulaca have chance to set seed as they may take over the garden. You do not need to water often for proper Portulaca care. The cylindrical foliage of the Portulaca plants retains moisture very well, thus, regular watering is not needed. When they are watered, just a light watering will do, as their root zone is very shallow… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Portulaca


Native to North America.


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