Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Verdolaga or Purslane

I was reading a message board from La Manznilla about someone looking for Verdolaga or Purslane and this was their message.

There is a "weed" called purslane, or pigweed, or, in Mexico, verdolaga - which is also very high in many nutrients (omega 3 for example). It's easy to grow and harvest, and can be eaten raw or cooked. It is related to portulaca. If anyone sees any growing wild, and would be willing to transplant it into a pot, I will be most grateful. I'll bring seeds for the domestic type, but I hear the wild variety is better tasting. This fall, I'll be looking out for someone who can show me which other weeds are actually edible and nutritious; why work so hard at growing familiar vegetables, when local, wild ones grow so readily?
There are a number of similar looking weeds and I had to go out with a Mexican neighbor to get the right one.  Not a good idea to eat things that only look similar.  These are the wild ones unlike the vertical ones raised commercially.

Verdolaga found on our street

Verdolaga example found on the Internet

Ours won't look like these from a market

It is an excellent source of Vitamin A (100 g provides 44% of RDA). Purslane is also a rich source of vitamin C, and some B-complex vitamins like riboflavin, niacin, pyridoxine and carotenoids, as well as dietary minerals, such as iron, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and manganese.

Verdolaga Link


Carol Lopez said...

Hi Sparks, Those are the traditional verdolaga plants that my Mexican neighbor pointed out to me, and showed me how to cook. I agree, they won't grow as vigorously, or as upright, as the ones in the market pic; however, if they are re-potted as you have done...? , they will grow. Don't know when is the best season for them...anyway, I like the idea of researching what grows naturally (part of the idea of permaculture, I think). That "weed" grows all over the world, and is highly valued in Europe, especially Turkey.

sparks said...

When they get a little bigger I'll try one. Hoping without competition they'll do better. Would rather use as salad additive than cook them but we'll see

norm said...

That stuff grows well in Ohio, we always called it pig weed and fed it to the pigs. Wheelbarrow loads of it mixed with lambs ear from weeding the vegetable garden, the pigs loved it.

Marc Olson said...

Vergolaga grows well here in Yucatan. I've got it all over the back yard and my pet tortoises eat it, but I had no idea that it was a common and valuable human food. Here's to a new salad green...

sparks said...

I just found the first in my lawn. Very small like the fotos. Would like to see the wild stuff in a harvest-able state

The construction of the house finished in April 2011 and I'm pretty much settled in. As of March 2014 I'm in preparation for rain mode for this coming summer. That includes sealing and painting things and dealing with drainage issues from last year.

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