Portulaca. meridiana Linn. f.
Diffuse annual, prostrate, glabrous, somewhat fleshy, rooting at nodes. Tap root somewhat woody, nodal adventitious roots fibrous, up to 3 cm long. Stem and branches filiform, internodes 2-20 (-35) mm long. Leaves opposite, sessile to subsessile, ovate-oblong to elliptic-oblong or ovate to ovate-lanceolate, 3-10 mm long, 2-3 mm broad, acute or somewhat obtuse, fleshy; stipular hairs copious, silvery white, 2-10 mm long. Flowers solitary terminal, yellow, 6-8 mm across, surrounded by a 4-leaved involucre and silvery hairs. Sepals equal, membranous, basally united into a minute tube half embedded in the floral axis, ovate-oblong, 3- 4.5 mm long, 2-2.5 mm broad, obtuse. Petals 4, united at the base, pandurate, 3- 4 mm long, 1.5-2 mm broad, obtuse, yellow. Stamens 8, adnate to petals; filaments filiform, 1.5-2.5 mm long. Carpels 4, syncarpous; ovary c. 2 mm, half sunk in floral axis; style c. 2 mm long, quadrifid, with 4 linear, reclinate stigmas. Capsule 3.5- 4.5 mm long, 2.5-3 mm in diam., oblong-conical. Seeds black, c. 1 mm, reniform, somewhat papillose.
Fl. Per. Aug.-March.
Type: Described from Egypt.
Distribution: Dry waste places. West Pakistan, India, tropical Africa and Asia.
The leaves are diuretic, used in dysuria and externally applied in erysipelas. Seeds used as a vermifuge.