Purslane is a broadleaf weed with a vertically growing, mat-forming growth habit and thick, succulent stems and leaves. Its stems are multibranched, growing horizontally or turned up at the ends. They are purplish-red in color. Purslane has thick, fleshy leaves and a thick taproot with many fibrous secondary roots. Blooming from June through November, Purslane produces small yellow flowers occurring singly or in terminal clusters. The flowers consist of five yellow petals with two green sepals with numerous yellow stamens. It reproduces by seeds, though broken stem fragments can root and form new plants.
This broadleaf weed prefers disturbed areas with rocky soils and is often found growing in waste areas, rocky bluffs, in crevices between bricks and in cracked cement; however, this weed can also grow in turf grass areas. Purslane thrives throughout much of the United States and Canada.
Portulaca oleracea can be a troublesome weed to eliminate when relying on cultural weed control methods alone. Physical removal can remove single plants, but it is important to make sure no stem fragments are left behind. Professionally applied broadleaf weed killers are the best bet for complete removal.