WILDFLOWERS OF NEW MEXICO

 

This dainty groundcover with 3–6 sprawling or slightly erect stems 2–6-inches long has dense, shaggy tufts of kinky, white hairs in the axils of tiny, succulent leaves. The growth characteristics depend on habitat. Dryer areas produce a more erect plant and a denser hairy covering. Note the rosy-colored flowers, tubular succulent leaves, and dense hairs under the flowers.


FLOWER: May–December. Dark pink to rosy flowers 1/2-inch wide (12 mm) with 5, rounded, egg-shaped petals bloom in a hairy cluster of leaves on the branch tips. Showy yellow stamens add to the beauty.


LEAVES: Alternate, crowded on stem. Numerous narrow, tubular, fleshy leaves reach 5/8-inch long (1.6 cm).


HABITAT: Dry sandy, rocky soils, roadsides, disturbed areas; desert grassland and scrub, eastern plains.


ELEVATION: 3,600–6,600 feet.


RANGE: AZ, CO, KS, NM, OK, TX, southern states to Atlantic.


SIMILAR SPECIES: Silk-cotton Purslane, P. halimoides, scattered statewide, has narrow tubular leaves 1/8-inch thick (3 mm) with hairy axils and  small, yellow flowers to 3/16-inch wide (5 mm). The introduced invasive Common Purslane, P. oleracea, statewide, has yellow flowers and flat, oval leaves.


NM COUNTIES: Southern, central, and scattered elsewhere in NM in low-elevation arid habitats: Bernalillo, De Baca, Dona Ana, Eddy, Grant, Guadalupe, Harding, Hidalgo, Lea, Lincoln, Luna, Mora, Otero, Quay, Roosevelt, San Juan, Sandoval, Santa Fe, Sierra, Socorro, Torrance.

SHAGGY  PURSLANE,  KISS-ME-QUICK

PORTULACA  PILOSA  (PORTULACA  MUNDULA)

Purslane Family, Portulacaceae

Annual herb

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Kinky white hairs grow in the leaf axils and under the flowers. Dry habitats produce more hairs.

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