Harvesting: Purslane (+ Foraging, Transplanting, and Preparing)

Sunday, August 9, 2020

Harvesting Purslane

There is an edible weed that grows in loose soil in a sunny spot that I've been spotting around my garden, purslane. It has sort of succulent-ish leaves that vine out from its central root. When I spot it, I dig it up and replant it into a landscaping bed in the backyard (and maybe give it a pinch of homemade compost), so now I have a whole bed of little purslane plants!
Transplanted Purslane 2 days after planting, much happier

'Turns out you can also propagate purslane by taking a vine cutting, sticking in the ground and watering well.
Transplanted Purslane 2 days after planting, much happier

First thing you want to make sure you do is check that what you have is actually wild purslane and not spotted spurge (Euphorbia maculata). Spotted spurge is poisonous, and has a milky latex when injured. Purslane is edible and does not have this milky latex.
Foraging for Purslane!

I generally follow Nature and Garden's Purslane How-To, but really all you need to know when harvesting is that the younger vines are better, don't cut off too much (so the plant can keep growing), and purslane is a good lemon-y leafy green for salads and sauteeing.
Purslane on a garden salad
Purslane sauteed in bacon fat


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