Portulaca is a stunning flowering plant. This edible perennial species produces vibrant flowers in various bright shades.
It is native to the Uruguay of Argentina and is also known as moss rose on some continents. This is basically a succulent that grows multicolored blossoms in medium-sized spreading form.
You can cultivate this succulent anywhere in your garden, whether it is an outdoor yard or a secure indoor space. As long as a portulaca plant is getting enough sunlight, it will keep blooming consistently till the end of its lifespan. Let’s validate a few important caring facts about the portulaca plant to get hassle-free cultivation of this plant-
How to Care for Portulaca Plant:
Soil: It prefers sandy, slightly acidic, lean soil that can drain very well
Water: It has moderate water needs, try to give 1-inch of water per week. Let the top surface of the soil dry a little between watering
Fertilizer: Any balanced slow-release fertilizer that is high in phosphorus content, twice a year
Sun Exposure: Provide full sun and bright direct sunlight. So, place it in a spot where it can get 8-10 hours of bright sunlight every day.
Climate: This plant needs high heat with consistently warm weather with low humidity to thrive
Pruning: Portulaca plant must stay bushy and prune less than other perennial succulents. Prune only once a year as a normal trimming session and keep removing dead or infected parts frequently from your plant throughout the year.
Repotting: Repotting is essential for such bushy succulents, but don’t overdo it frequently. You can try repotting your growing portulaca plant, only when it overgrows its current planter visibly.
Troubleshoots: Mealybugs, aphids, blights, spider mites, ants, etc. are some common nuisances, you can deal with a growing portulaca plant. Try some organic remedies like soapy water, vinegar, neem oil, rubbing alcohol, etc. methods to get rid of this annoyance harmlessly.
How To Propagate Portulaca Plant?
Moss rose or portulaca plant can be easily propagated like any other flowering succulents. You can even try this in various forms like from seeds or cuttings and multiple mediums as well, like soil or water. Here we mention the easiest way of propagating a portulaca plant through its cutting-
Supplies You Will Need:
- A shear or pruner
- A glass
- Some distilled water
- A tray
- Preferred potting mix
- Clay pot
How to Do It:
- Cut 4-5 inches long stem from the top of a growing portulaca plant with a shear
- Remove the leaves from its bottom section and leaves only 4-5 leaves on the top
- Bring a glass, fill half away with distilled water, and place the cutting into it
- Make sure you submerge about 2 inches of the cutting into the water properly
- Place the glass in a bright spot with indirect sunlight and validate closely
- Keep changing the water, if you ever find that it seems a little dirty
- Once the new roots will sprout from the end, take out the cutting and place it on a tray
- This will encourage the roots to thrive further
- Now, arrange a potting soil by combining commercial potting mix, perlite, peat moss, and fertilizer in equal amount
- Pour the prepared soil into the pot and pat gently
- Spray some water over the top to make it evenly moist
- Finally, bring the cutting, once you find that the root reaches 2-inch long height and sow it into the soil carefully
- Place the planter in a proper sunny and low-humid place to let it thrive naturally.
Why Is My Portulaca Plant Dropping Leaves?
Dropping leaves are one common issue with a growing portulaca plant. Several gardeners complain that they turn clueless about why their moss rose plant is losing or dropping leaves undefinedly, despite taking proper care!
Dropping leaves from the bottom of your plant is quite normal and happens due to the natural cycle. But if you find that it is happening with the newly sprouted or young leaves too, you must pay some attention to your plants.
Reasons for Dropping Leaves
The only reason for dropping leaves with a growing portulaca is the watering issue. This could have happened for several reasons. Such as-
- Poor draining
- Root rot
- Using normal tap water
- And sometimes underwatering too
How to Fix:
- Look for the thirsty signs of your plant closely
- Water your plant only when you find that your plant is thirsty
- Try to water 1-inch of water per week to a growing portulaca plant
- Use soil and planter with good drainage quality
- Make sure the soil is draining the excess water well and never causes any root rot problem
- Apply filtered water or distilled water, especially for newly grown plants
- And never keep our plant unwater for more than one month constantly
How to Revive a dying Portulaca Plant:
Moss rose plants, especially the potted ones sometimes start dying undefinedly. This could happen due to some irregularity in their caring methods. Here is a quick overview of why a growing portulaca plant suddenly starts dying, along with some possible remedies to revive your dying plant into a thriving one again-
- Poor drainage
- Nutrient deficiency
- Higher humidity
- Untreated pests and bugs
- Dropping leaves
- Wilted leaves
- Discolored foliage
- Root rot
- Stem rot
- Excessive insect infestation
- Stunt growth
- Fungal or bacterial spread on your plant
How to Revive:
- Sow your plant in a planter with a good drainage system
- Use soil that loses enough to drain well
- Repot your plant in a new pot with a whole new potting mix
- Water the plant thoroughly after the replantation
- Use a planter that is only 1-2 sizes bigger than the root ball
- Water your plant once a week with -1inch depth watering
- Put the plant under bright sunlight with direct sun exposure
- Usefully fertile soil during the replantation and apply a high-phosphorus compost layer at the base
- Keep the humidity level always low
- Trim off the infected parts with a disinfected trimer
- And apply any homemade insecticide spray on your plant head to toe to keep it safe from the grasp of insects permanently.
How to Make Portulaca Plant Bushy?
Bushier portulaca plant means more flowers and more flowers mean a more beautiful garden, isn’t it? So, here we come up with some smart tricks, which help your moss rose plant to get bushier in a natural manner-
- Trim off the new branches once every 2-3 months consistently to encourage the growth
- Use sharp objects to prune and that must be disinfected well
- Do a complete session of trimming at the end of the May month, every year
- Never cut off any branches with new buds
- Keep your plant free from any kind of infected leaves or insects
- And feed it with a bone meal fertilization once a year to hold the bushier form for a long while.
Is Portulaca Plant toxic to Animals?
Moss rose or portulaca plant contains insoluble calcium oxalate. Thus, despite being an edible succulent, it is considered as toxic to many animals, including your house pets like cats or dogs. Hence, it is better to keep your house pets away from the contact of a growing portulaca plant, if you have them both in-house.
Pinterest Image: How to care for Portulaca Plants – Revive a Dying Portulaca