Moss Rose

The moss rose is a perennial that is great for hot, dry climates. Learn more about this great flower!

Moss Rose

Also called the Portulaca grandiflora, these species were originally from South America. They are also known as sun plants, Eleven O'Clock, and Purslanes. These plants thrive in the heat. If you are someone who may forget to water your flowers, this is a great pick! They have a brilliant array of flowers. You'll get reds, oranges, yellows, pinks, and many other colors when it blooms. It normally blooms in the early summer timeframe, around June to early July. Its a smaller plant, only getting up to about 8 inches in height, so is better as a ground cover. They also do well in rock gardens and next to hot asphalt driveways and sidewalks.

Plant your moss rose in a fully sunny area. It needs hot, dry, sunny conditions. Even poor soils are OK with the portulaca. Its more important to keep the proper amount of moisture in the soil. In fact, that is the key. Too much water can cause issues like stem and root rot.  Use sandy soil and/or an elevated bed to help those problems. They also do well in containers as well.

You'll need seeds to grow the Portulaca. Newer seeds tend to produce flowers that bloom longer. Planting early indoors can help with an early bloom. Seed germination normally takes one to two weeks. Like most hot weather plants, frost can be deadly so be sure to plant after your frost date. You can also use cuttings to propagate. You can use a nitrogen fertilizer initially and then a phosphorus mix to help improve the blooms.

Aphids, snails, and other pests do like the moss rose though. You may need an insecticide to keep those creatures in order.

You can eat portulaca seeds both cooked and raw. Some good recipes involve grinding the seeds and using them for sauces and soups.



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