Purslane an Edible Weed

I Hope I can Save My Herb Garden From This Infestation…
I’m Running Out Of Thyme

Hopefully we have seen the end of this horrendous hot spell and with some luck will see some rain without the lightning.  I has been a horrendous week with the heat dome dissipating with its expected thunder and lightning threats.  My heart goes out to the residents of Litton.  This was not in the Farmers Almanac of what was predicted for our summer months but I guess they too have not taken into consideration the effects of global warming and considering the consequences that other countries are facing we still may consider ourselves lucky.  It has been a real trial to keep our gardens thriving in this incredible heat but I am pleased to say that the greenhouse is doing very well, the plants seem to thrive in this heat unlike myself.

Recently it was brought to my attention the health benefits of a weed that I have an abundance of I sometimes feel like I could feed the entire area with this abundant but easily picked weed, Purslane.  It is also known as Duckweed, Pursley, Little Hogweed and is a member of the Portulaca family.  It is considered a beneficial weed that is thought of as  a spinach or watercress substitute.  It is an annual succulent that is found in North Africa, Southern Europe, Mexico, the Middle East, India, Australia and of course Canada.  It is tolerant to drought and poor soil but of course thrives in gardens that are well watered and of good soil.  It is a good companion plant as it provides ground cover which keeps moisture in the soil and also provides nutrients to the growing plants.  It is 93% water 3% carbohydrates, 2% protein has no fats and is rich in calcium, magnesium and many other vitamins and minerals.  100 grams has only 20 calories but is rich in beta carotene which is great for prevention of free radicals that cause cancers, it is the best source of omega 3 fatty acids on par with flax seed, algae, and fish.  This is great for your heart and arteries.  The extract of Purslane mimics insulin so it is great for diabetics.  Its contains an anti aging enzyme telomerase that protects DNA’s repair function so its great for your skin and is used to treat eczema and acne and is use like aloe vera on sunburns.   It has a lemony flavour slightly sour and salty and can be eaten in a salad, steamed like spinach, or stir fried.  The Turks make pastries with it and when mixed with yogurt is a Tzatziki variant,  it is also mixed into soups with onion, rice, lentils, and tomato paste.  The only draw back that I was able to find is that is not good for dogs, cats, and horses that and should not be consumed to any great degree by those prone to kidney stones especially the seeds from the plant.  I would like to invite everyone over to pick this and any other weed that is present in my yard and garden!

The market was cancelled last week due to the extreme heat but we shall be back in full force this coming weekend.  Look forward to seeing you there.

Happy Gardening

Samantha Nason
BS Ranch & Greenhouses
250 547 6567 • samanthanason@hotmail.com