Cactus and Tender Succulents forum: Is this a succulent or weed?

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Name: Tiffany Wreathfreshโ„ข
Puget Sound, WA (Zone 8b)
Sempervivums
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LivingWreaths
Jul 6, 2017 2:40 PM CST
This popped up from a 'mixed' succulent container purchased long ago, but in potted form stays delicate and petite. Due to 'self-migration' ended up here in a flower bed. It has tiny yellow flowers...
Let me know if it deserves preservation, or the "shovel treatment."

Thanks!

'Succuleed?' 'Wucculent?' (I'll 'workshop' these...)

Thumb of 2017-07-06/LivingWreaths/572d33

Name: Paul
Utah (Zone 5b)
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Paul2032
Jul 6, 2017 3:05 PM CST
Pursalane......a weed to me.....
Paul Smith Pleasant Grove, Utah
Name: Brian
NW Pennsylvania (Zone 5b)
Bigtrout
Jul 6, 2017 3:09 PM CST
Yes and yes, it is a succulent and yes in alot of places its a weed, farmers here call it hogweed. Its common name is purslane and Portulaca oleracea is the species.
[Last edited by Bigtrout - Jul 6, 2017 4:07 PM (+)]
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Name: Tiffany Wreathfreshโ„ข
Puget Sound, WA (Zone 8b)
Sempervivums
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LivingWreaths
Jul 6, 2017 4:16 PM CST
Thank you both for the info! Not the first time a weed is sold as a plant! Relatives from California desert came to visit me and commented about the 'weeds' I had in my front yard (Delosperma, 'Hardy ice plant'). That was the first year I planted them in the ground instead of a pot--mistake! Spent DAYS digging these deep-rooted invaders out of the yard!

See them on the right-side of photo?


Thumb of 2017-07-06/LivingWreaths/898316

Name: Tim Stoehr
Canby, Oregon (Zone 8b)
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tcstoehr
Jul 6, 2017 4:34 PM CST
It's quite edible too. There's a huge patch of it in my veg garden that I let grow just for that. Supposedly lots of Omega-3 fatty acids... yumm!
Name: Brian
NW Pennsylvania (Zone 5b)
Bigtrout
Jul 6, 2017 4:35 PM CST
Dont let purslane get loose, its hard to eradicate! But supposedly it is edible and is closely related to Portulaca grandiflora or Moss Rose.
Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
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Baja_Costero
Jul 6, 2017 4:38 PM CST

Moderator

I planted a Delosperma on a slope here for exactly the "weedy" character that you identified, Tiffany... here (a quarter your rainfall) it can be managed, and those roots it puts down as it grows are excellent for controlling erosion on steep slopes. As long as you don't let it escape or invade, it's actually pretty useful. I regularly hack it back. Here's an example in the background behind the flowering Cotyledon.



On the subject of succulent weeds (perhaps this discussion belongs on the Succulent forum?) here are a few examples which grow around here.

Carpobrotus, which can survive in sand through our annual 3-6 month summer drought, is all over the native succulent habitat in a bad way.



This red flowered ice plant will strangulate other plants if it has to share space in the ground, but usually requires irrigation to make it through our dry summers.



Two succulent annuals sprout with the winter rain and flower and die in the summer. Here is a lawn of one growing on almost pure sand.



And here is another one growing in native succulent habitat.



So I guess it's fair to say the definition of weedy really does depend on where you are.
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - Jul 6, 2017 4:45 PM (+)]
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Name: Tiffany Wreathfreshโ„ข
Puget Sound, WA (Zone 8b)
Sempervivums
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LivingWreaths
Jul 6, 2017 5:39 PM CST
'WEEDY IS IN THE EYE OF THE BEGARDNER" :)

[quote="Baja_Costero"]I planted a Delosperma on a slope here for exactly the "weedy" character that you identified, Tiffany... here (a quarter your rainfall) it can be managed, and those roots it puts down as it grows are excellent for controlling erosion on steep slopes. As long as you don't let it escape or invade, it's actually pretty useful. I regularly hack it back. Here's an example in the background behind the flowering Cotyledon.

YES, when i dug out the DEEP root structure, I decided the PNW marketing of this 'hardy ice plant' should be changed to 'Great erosion control for clay soils!' It's definitely an A++ soil-binder! I would have planted it in a diff spot where i need erosion control. I still have it growing in a planter as I love the flowers...I've nicknamed it 'Vista Del Snail Townhomes.' Big Grin

On the subject of succulent weeds (perhaps this discussion belongs on the Succulent forum?) here are a few examples which grow around here.

Carpobrotus, which can survive in sand through our annual 3-6 month summer drought, is all over the native succulent habitat in a bad way.


This is sold at 'BigBox' in 1.5" pots for $4, up here. It's all relative, isn't it? Great example of plant marketing by region.

This red flowered ice plant will strangulate other plants if it has to share space in the ground, but usually requires irrigation to make it through our dry summers.


Also sold at 'Bigbox' as a 'tropical houseplant' in PNW. Beautiful but DEADLYin its native habitat. LOVE the exchange of knowledge on native habits of these plants! As we all share this information across zones, very helpful to prevent the invasion of introduced species that can take advantage of a zonal feature where they've been introduced (e.g. plenty of rainfall and long summer days in PNW).





Thumb of 2017-07-06/LivingWreaths/ab5ae3

Picture of 'Vista Del Snail Townhomes' penthouse
[Last edited by LivingWreaths - Jul 6, 2017 5:43 PM (+)]
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Name: Tiffany Wreathfreshโ„ข
Puget Sound, WA (Zone 8b)
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LivingWreaths
Jul 6, 2017 5:45 PM CST
Tim, what does it taste like?
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
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valleylynn
Jul 6, 2017 8:15 PM CST
I find it rather bland tasting, but love the crunch of the stems. The leaves are very tender. Great in salads, on a sandwhich, or just pluck from the soil and eat. Nice garden snack.
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL ๐ŸŒต๐ŸŒทโš˜๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒป (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Jul 7, 2017 5:57 AM CST
Although there are no blooms visible in the pic, there is what looks like a "winged seed pod" at the right side of the pic. This is probably Portulaca umbraticola, not P. oleracea. Observing the blooms would be diagnostic. P. umbraticola blooms are reliably open here from about 8:30 AM until about 11 AM, and always very busy with tiny bees.

P. oleracea (purslane) blooms are very small and yellow.
Common Purslane (Portulaca oleracea)

P. umbraticola (ornamental purslane) blooms are much bigger, and can be a variety of colors.
Purslane (Portulaca umbraticola)

This species was sold as P. oleracea for decades, so there is a lot of confusion, and pics w/o a blooms showing are ID'd as P. oleracea 99% of the time without even mentioning the possibility of P. umbraticola, which is cultivated & sold ornamentally. There are named cultivars:
https://garden.org/plants/sear...

These plants are so popular, along with their cousin, P. grandiflora (moss roses,) that there is a forum just for them here:
https://garden.org/forums/view...
๐Ÿ‘€๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‚ - SMILE! -โ˜บ๐Ÿ˜Žโ˜ปโ˜ฎ๐Ÿ‘ŒโœŒโˆžโ˜ฏ๐Ÿฃ๐Ÿฆ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿ๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿพ
The less I interfere, the more balance mother nature provides.
๐Ÿ‘’๐ŸŽ„๐Ÿ‘ฃ๐Ÿก๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿโฆโง ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒป๐ŸŒธ๐ŸŒผ๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒฝโ€โ˜€๐ŸŒบ
โ˜•๐Ÿ‘“ The only way to succeed is to try.
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
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valleylynn
Jul 7, 2017 11:55 AM CST
Great info Tiffany. Are these also edible?
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL ๐ŸŒต๐ŸŒทโš˜๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒป (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Jul 7, 2017 12:17 PM CST
I'm more concerned with having enough to perform ornamentally and haven't tried, but I say yes for these reasons...

P. umbraticola was sold as P. oleracea for decades, so if there was a noticeable difference in flavor/digestibility, I'm sure that would be a thing the "it's edible" crowd would be very quick to highlight.

When I show pics of P. umbraticola with open blooms in places where folks from other countries add comments, there are always a few along the lines of, "Yummy!"

When pics are included with published recipes, it is often P. umbraticola that is shown, not P. oleracea.
๐Ÿ‘€๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‚ - SMILE! -โ˜บ๐Ÿ˜Žโ˜ปโ˜ฎ๐Ÿ‘ŒโœŒโˆžโ˜ฏ๐Ÿฃ๐Ÿฆ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿ๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿพ
The less I interfere, the more balance mother nature provides.
๐Ÿ‘’๐ŸŽ„๐Ÿ‘ฃ๐Ÿก๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿโฆโง ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒป๐ŸŒธ๐ŸŒผ๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒฝโ€โ˜€๐ŸŒบ
โ˜•๐Ÿ‘“ The only way to succeed is to try.
[Last edited by purpleinopp - Jul 7, 2017 12:19 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1495511 (13)
Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Garden Sages I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator
Forum moderator I helped beta test the first seed swap Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant and/or Seed Trader Garden Ideas: Master Level
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valleylynn
Jul 7, 2017 1:50 PM CST
More great information. Thank you so much Tiffany.

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