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Marcus, Joseph A.
Portulaca pilosa L.
Kiss me quick, Chisme
Synonym(s): Portulaca cyanosperma, Portulaca mundula
USDA Symbol: popi3
A prostrate, fleshy, branching plant with small, pink or purplish flowers at the end of branches with tufts of whitish hairs in the leaf axils.
This low, sprawling, native plant is similar to the Garden Portulaca (P. grandiflora), which also has tufts of hair in the leaf axils but larger flowers to 2 (5 cm) wide. The Latin name, Portulaca, (meaning, little gate) describes the lid on the fruit capsule.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Annual Habit: Herb Root Type: Fibrous Size Notes:
Less than 6 inches. Flower:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Red , Pink , Purple
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct
, TX Native Distribution:
Coastal plain; North Carolina south to Florida; west to Texas. Native Habitat:
Dry, sandy soil; disturbed areas.
Growing ConditionsWater Use:
Low , Medium Light Requirement:
Sun , Part Shade Soil Moisture:
Dry , Moist Conditions Comments:
Chisme (Spanish for gossip) spreads like gossip from seed, though easily removed. The low growing annual
fills in nicely around other larger plants and displays attractive fuchsia flowers in the summer. Works well in a rock garden, as a groundcover or in a pot. Needs good drainage.
BenefitConspicuous Flowers: yes
Interesting Foliage: yes
National Wetland Indicator Status
This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1
(Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here
for map of regions.
Herbarium Specimen(s)NPSOT 1058
Collected Sep 8, 1995 in Comal County by Mary Beth WhiteNPSOT 1093
Collected August 15, 1996 in Bexar County by Mike Fox
Wildflower Center Seed BankLBJWC-MM-749
Collected 2010-07-14 in Lampasas County by Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Record Last Modified: 2013-10-15
Research By: TWC Staff