Portulaca grandiflora Hook.

Portulaca grandiflora plant

Family - Portulacaceae

Stems - To 30cm tall, herbaceous, succulent, glabrous, erect to sprawling, rarely rooting at nodes.

Leaves - Alternate, terete to somewhat flattened, linear-oblong, to 5mm wide, 1.3cm long, succulent. Tufts of stiff bristles present at base of leaves.

Portulaca grandiflora stem

Inflorescence - Single flower terminating stem, often with involucre-like whorl of leaves at base of flower.

Flowers - Corolla red, rose, pink, orange, yellow or white. Petals to 3cm long, 5 to +30 in number. Stamens +/-40.

Flowering - July - September.

Habitat - Cultivated and possibly escaped to dry waste ground of roadsides and railroads.

Origin - Native to Argentina.

Other info. - This little plant is a survivor. I have friends back in Florida that frequently chop the plant up into tiny bits and then spread the pieces along a brick sidewalk. Within days there are new plants coming up everywhere. This is something to keep in mind if you are thinking of planting the plant in your yard.
The flowers are very striking and new colors are always being developed in cultivation. This species is a "bread and butter" plant of local garden centers.
The plant is capable of growing in dry neglected conditions.

Photographs taken off Prairie View Rd., Platte County, MO., 7-15-99.


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