Chicken Weed
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Chicken Weed
ative Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Chicken weed, Wild purslane • Kannada: ಗೋಳಿಸೊಪ್ಪು Goli soppu, ಗೋಣಿಸೊಪ್ಪು Goni soppu, ಹಾಲಿಬಚ್ಚೆಲೆ Haalibacchele, ಬಿಳಿಯಗಱುಕೆ Biliya garuke • Tamil: பசலை கீறை Pasalai keerai • Telugu: Goddu pavelli
Botanical name: Portulaca quadrifida      Family: Portulacaceae (Purslane family)

Chicken weed is an annual herb. Stems articulated, prostrate, rooting at nodes; leaf axils patent pilose. Leaves opposite; petiole absent; leaf blade flat, ovate, obovate, or ovate-elliptic, 4-8 × 2-5 mm, slightly narrowed toward base, apex obtuse or acute. Flowers solitary, surrounded by involucre of 4 or 5 bracts, white pilose. Sepals obovate-oblong, 2.5-3 mm, membranous, veined. Petals 4, yellow, oblong or broadly elliptic, 3-6 mm, connate at base, apex mucronate. Stamens 8-10. The plants are used for medicinal purposes. In Rajasthan, the leaves, after boiling, are used in preparing a bread by mixing with Bajra. In Tamil Nadu, leaves and tender shoots cooked and eaten as greens.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Delhi.

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