There are several varieties of this wonderful plant that is so easy to grow. It thrives in areas other plants would die in. It tolerates drought.This is portulaca umbraticola, The pot on the left is about three weeks old. I took pieces that had been knocked off the pots I had and I stuck them in the dirt. They are already looking strong and beginning to bloom. I am sure that they have roots. I could have just composted the pieces but I remember from the time of being a kid, that if I took pieces of portulaca, that I could grow roots on them in water. I also learned that propagation also meant just placing the ends in dirt. I intend to put the new pot in front of the house.

Plants are so much fun and propagation is great. Portulaca is a relative of the common purslane that grows easily and everywhere and survives droughts as well. Purslane is even good to eat for most people and has many antioxidants. Purslane is a weed that has driven me crazy. Maybe I need to start eating it.

A neighbor of ours had an interesting idea and she put portulaca seeds in between the cracks of the sidewalk and I think even in the crack between the street and sidewalk. The result was for years that the portulaca would self-seed and each year would bring more and more. It was lovely and kept other weeds out.

The other new plant to our yard this year is the sweet pea. I don’t know why I have neglected this one, but I am looking forward to the flowering. So far it is climbing up a trellis in a large pot where it is surrounded by white portulaca. I have no idea what color the sweet peas will be so it is going to be a surprise.

I cannot wait.




About Richard Koerner

Seventy something, father, papi, educator, organizer, Francophile, traveler, amateur photographer, gardener, cyclist, kayaker, calligrapher, cinephile, reader, and overall renaissance type human being.
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