Botanical Name : Claytonia sibirica
Species: C. sibirica
Synonyms: Claytonia alsinoides. C. sibirica.
Common Names: Siberian Spring Beauty, Siberian Miner’s Lettuce, Candy Flower or Pink Purslane
Habitat:Claytonia sibirica is native to E. Asia – Siberia. Western N. America – Alaska to California. Naturalized in Britain. It grows on damp woods, shaded streamsides etc, especially on sandy acid soils. Thickets of red alder, dogwood, vine-leaf maple, moist shaded coniferous forests from sea level to 2000 metres.
Claytonia sibirica is a short-lived perennial or annual flowering plant with hermaphroditic flowers which are protandrous and self-fertile. The numerous fleshy stems form a rosette and the leaves are lanceolate. The flowers are 8-20 mm diameter, with five white, candy-striped, or pink petals, flowering is between February and August.
It is not frost tender. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Apr to July, and the seeds ripen from Jun to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies.The plant is self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils and can grow in very acid soils.
It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers dry or moist soil.
A very tolerant and easily grown plant, it prefers a moist peaty soil and is unhappy in dry situations. It succeeds in full sun though is happier when given some shade and also grows in the dense shade of beech trees. Plants usually self-sow freely. This is an excellent and trouble-free salad plant. It is extremely cold-hardy and can provide edible leaves all year round in all areas of the country even if it is not given protection.
Seed – sow spring or autumn in situ. The seed usually germinates rapidly.
Leaves – raw or cooked. They usually have a fairly bland flavour and are quite nice in a salad or cooked as a green vegetable. The leaves have a distinct earthy after-taste rather like raw beetroot. They are available all year round but can turn rather bitter in the summer, especially if the plant is growing in a hot dry position. Although on the small side, the leaves are produced in abundance and are very easily harvested.
The plant is diuretic. A poultice of the chewed leaves has been applied to cuts and sores. The juice of the plant has been used as eye drops for sore red eyes. A cold infusion of the stems has been used as an antidandruff wash for the hair.
A good ground cover plant for a shady position. This species is a short-lived perennial but it usually self-sows freely and gives a dense weed-excluding ground cover
Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.