Did you ever know that you can grow purslane for consuming purposes? If you think purslane is just a weed, this article will change your thoughts. Keep on reading that what you can do with purslane and how to grow purslane.
Whenever we hear about growing purslane, a picture hits the mind of “unwanted weeds.” But gone are those days when Purslane was considered a weed.
You must be surprised to know; purslane is super nutritious and delicious. It is grown into garden areas for its versatility and vivacious green color.
Purslane can grow without any external efforts. Also, flowers look magnificent and enhance the beauty of the garden spaces.
So, if you want to grow such a vibrant plant in the garden, here’s the complete guide on how to grow purslane in your garden, growing tips, and how to prepare delicious stuff using these purslanes. Let’s get started.
All About Purslane
Purslane is a form of weed that grows annually. It looks like portulaca and is even named Portulaca oleracea. This can be grown in the Middle East countries, Australia, Southeast Asia, and the Mediterranean region.
However, it certainly grows in some regions of North America. This is a form of succulence and can grow in all soil forms.
In open ground or wild regions, it grows horizontally instead of vertically. This is why the plant is one or two inches tall in length. Once spread, they can form a thick mat that can spread nearly 16 inches. The new Purslane can grow in an upright manner.
The stem and leaves can tolerate winter conditions and even drought conditions. It has needles-like leaves with a broad base.
Its flowers are yellow in color and ¼ inches in length. It starts blooming during the later summers and spring seasons. However, the flowers remain open only for a few hours of the day.
Another great plant that you can grow at your home is curry leaf plants.
More than 500 varieties of purslane plants are available to grow in different climate conditions.
However, some of the best varieties of the purslane that can be grown are as follows:
1. Gruner Red
Gruner Red is one variety of the Purslane, widely grown in the garden. It has pink stems, and the leaves are oval. It attains a height of 12 inches when fully mature.
2. Golden Purslane
P. oleracea variety Sativa is a golden variety that has slightly yellow-greenish leaves. This variety can expand up to 10 inches tall and grow to the fullest in all weather conditions.
3. P. oleracea
This is one of the most common varieties of the purslane, which is grown in any place, especially in garden areas.
It can spread on the ground up to 18 inches. This common variety is grown horizontally.
4. Goldgelber Purslane
This is one of the fastest-growing varieties of the purslane and can spread nearly 12 inches wide on the ground. When it matures, it attains a height of six inches and expands gradually.
These are some of the most common varieties that you can grow in your home garden easily. If you notice some of them grow on their own.
Also Read: How to Grow Betel Leaf
Is Purslane A Weed or Vegetable
We all know purslane as the form of weed, not a vegetable. This is a form of weed and a succulent plant variety that can tolerate drought and grow easily anywhere.
It doesn’t require any special weather conditions and soil to grow properly. Since this is a form of weed, it isn’t easy to get rid of it from the garden.
However, to your surprise, this is a form of edible vegetable plant which is highly nutritious. Therefore, this is widely accepted as the form of vegetables. But can be grown in the form of weeds.
At present, there are more than 500 varieties of this plant available that can be grown across the globe. This is drought-tolerant and has a thicker stem and swollen leaves. It is low in calories and widely known for being rich in antioxidants.
There are many varieties of ornamental succulents as well that you can grow at home to enhance the beauty of indoor gardens.
However, do not forget to check how to choose succulent pots the right way.
With so many qualities, let’s say purslane is more of an edible weed. Right? Now, we are sure you are interested in how to grow purslane in your home garden. Don’t worry, the next few sections will help you to grow purslane.
How to Grow Purslane
So, here’s the guide that will help you to grow purslane and use it in your dishes. There are three different ways to grow Purslane, which we will discuss below.
Keep on scrolling and find the way you think is easiest.
Method 1. Grow Purslane from Seeds
You can buy the fresh seeds of purslane from the market. This single plant can produce more than 50,000 seeds throughout its lifetime.
You can sow the seeds directly into the soil once the frost is passed. Before sowing, do ensure that the temperature must reach 60 F.
Now, pour water into the soil and sprinkle seeds. Press them gently and cover them with soil. It takes time to germinate and grow.
Also Read: How to Prepare Soil for Planting
Since this is the fastest growing plant, within 10 days, you will see the sprouts. After a few weeks, the sprouts turn into mature leaves, and the whole plant spreads into the garden areas.
You can also sow the seeds in your indoor spaces during frost time once the winter season is over, transplant the plant in open garden spaces, and let them germinate into the true leaves.
Do ensure to protect the young seedlings during prolonged sunny conditions and winds. It may damage them, so better to keep them under shelter.
Method 2. Grow Purslane from Stem Cutting
The second best way to cultivate the purslane is through stem cutting. This is the fastest spreading plant.
So, you can cut the stems into small pieces and sew them into the soil. This is the easiest method to cultivate the Purslane. Always use a sharp knife to cut the stems.
Cut at least 16 inches long stem and remove half of the leaves. Now, take a pot and fill it up with potting soil.
Also Read: Is Garlic A Vegetable?
Now place the stem cutting into the soil leaving the upper end. Keep them under the bright light but avoid keeping them directly.
Pour water into the soil so that the soil remains moist and supports the growth of the purslane.
Try to avoid water logging conditions as they damage the stem and roots. Once you notice the sprouts, you can take the entire plant gently and transfer it into the open garden space.
This provides enough space to expand. In addition to this, you can also use inches-long pieces of the stem. Burying these in the garden areas can help to grow the plant easily.
Method 3. Grow Purslane by Transplanting
You can also grow the purslane through transplanting. For transplanting, dig out the purslane plant with the help of the trowel.
Do ensure to keep the roots intact and don’t damage the stem. Create a hole in the soil and bury the root balls into the soil. Set it deep and fill it with soil. Let the plant grow and expand.
These are the ways through which you can grow purslane in your home garden. Provide them enough space and you will see them expand rapidly.
Tips to Grow a Healthy Purslane
Although purslane can grow all season, it is advised to follow these tips to grow them to the fullest.
- Always sow the plant in full sunny condition.
- Avoid pouring water in access. However, it would be great to water them properly during the summer seasons
- Purslane can grow exponentially, so do ensure to perform pruning before it starts flowering and prevent the spreading of the plant.
How to Harvest Purslane
Purslane will mature within six to eight weeks and be ready to harvest when seedlings appear.
The best way to harvest them is to either pull out the whole plant or cut the stems just above the roots so that they can grow again.
Do ensure to cut the plant two inches above the roots. Doing so helps them to regrow faster. As a result, the plant will continue to grow during the summer season.
Many gardeners prefer to grow again every season to have fleshy green leaves. Moreover, you need to water the plant properly during summer.
How to Preserve Purslane Leaves
The best way to store the purslane leaves is to clean them and wrap them in a cotton cloth or paper towel.
You can also use a plastic zipper bag to store them in the refrigerator. This helps to maintain the freshness of the leaves and allows you to store them for a week.
However, before keeping them in the refrigerator, do ensure to toss them into the water and clean them.
Alternatively, you can sun-dry the leaves and crush them to make a fine powder. This can be used as a flavor enhancer and thickening agent in soups and ice-creams.
Purslane can be used to cook certain delicious dishes. This is considered a flavor enhancer and can go perfectly with certain ingredients such as tomato, lettuce, fish, eggs, and cucumber. You can prepare curries.
1. Make Pickle
Purslane can also be best consumed as a pickle. Hence, to make the lip-smacking pickle from purslane, you need to chop purslane leaves into small pieces and fill the jar.
Now add vinegar, sugar, water, and other spices. Finally, pour all the leaves into the jar, mix it well and keep it untouched for a few days.
Keep it in the refrigerator or freezer. Now, you can use them on salad and for making sandwiches.
2. Purslane Salad
Purslane can be consumed as a salad with cooked barley and pomegranate seeds in winters.
However, the best way to consume purslane is to eat it raw. Moreover, you can also consume it by roasting it to reduce its slimy texture.
3. Cucumber Purslane Soup
Many people like to consume cucumber purslane soup as it is refreshing and can be consumed during summers.
Take some sauteed leaves of purslane and blend them with cucumber. You can also add some herbs, salts, and lemon to make it more delicious and creamier.
These are some of the things that you can easily cook with purslane leaves. However, there is a plethora of cooking ideas available that can be made using purslane.
Just hit your favorite browser and search Google for “Purslane leaves cooking ideas” and have lip-smacking dishes.
Would you Grow Purslane Leaves
In a nutshell, this is all about how to grow purslane and how to take care of and prevent it from expanding into the garden spaces.
Now, you can grow purslane easily in your garden spaces without worrying. Since this plant can grow easily and doesn’t require much care, you can grow them anywhere and in any climatic condition.
However, the only thing that you need to take care of is how to prevent it from spreading into the garden. For this, you need to perform pruning regularly to avoid such expansion.
Now, you have an idea about purslane and it is not just a random weed. You read the nutritional values of purslane leaves and the delicious things you can cook with them.
Will you grow a purslane plant in your home garden? Do let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
How to take care of purslane?
You just need to plant the purslane in full sun. Ensure that the soil is easily drained and retains very less moisture.
Can anyone eat purslane?
People having kidney stones or other kidney-related problems should avoid eating purslane.
When do I water purslane plants?
Purslane does not require much water. One deep watering session once every week even during summers is enough to grow purslane.
Do I need to feed fertilizer to purslane?
No, you don’t need to feed fertilizer to purslane. They can do well without any fertilizers or compost.
Why are the purslane leaves falling off?
Purslane leaves will drop themselves if there’s too much water or even if it is too dry. Make sure you provide ideal water to grow healthy purslane.