"Siberian Miner's Lettuce"
Portulacaceae (Purslane Family)
An annual or short lived perennial, growing to a height of 10 - 35 cm.
Distinguishing Features - Leaves: 2 stem leaves are elliptical-shaped, thick and fleshy, ranging from 1 - 5 cm wide and up to 7 cm long; opposite, on fleshy stem. The lower, basal leaves have long, thin petioles, 2 to 3 times longer than the blades, and are lanceolate, elliptic, or rhombic-ovate; blades may also be narrowly lanceolate and 3 - 10 mm wide. Flowers: 5 peppermint-striped petals; coloration: white with pink stripes, individual petals range from 6 - 12 mm long; 3 to 5 stamens are present; attached at base of ovary; blooming: late April to early September. Fruit: usually capsule, often opening at the top.
Native to much of western North America; Alaska south through British Columbia to California, east to Montana and Utah; in the moist rich soil conditins, in open to shady woods from the lowlands to moderate mountain elevations.
The Pink Purslane may be used as a lettuce or spinach substitute in salads. The leaves, stems, and flowers may all be eaten. All parts are high in vitamins A & C.
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