Botanical Name: Carpobrotus glaucescens
Species: C. glaucescens
Common Names:Pigface or Angular sea-fig
Habitat: Pigface is native to temperate eastern Australia. It is a succulent coastal groundcover.Grows near the sea.
Pigface is a perennial flowering plant growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 2 m (6ft 7in). The plant is a coastal ground cover one which originates from temperate eastern Australia. Leaves have 3.5-10 cm and 9-15 mm length and width, Flowers hold light purple color with width 3.2-6 cm, and Fruits with length and width of 2-3 cm and 1.6-2.4 cm possess a red to purple color. The pulp of the fruit is consumable having a flavor which is similar to that of a salty strawberry or kiwifruit. These wild fruits are considered the favorites of Australia for its well known taste, after the ripening they become purple and their pulp is eaten by squeezing it out.
The plant grows mostly in the duration between Summer and Spring, They are cultivated in two ways, directly through the seeds else with the help of cuttings, Propagation process is done by layering method easily in which the horizontal stem cuttings are rooted this is the way the plant actually grows by nature. The layers must have a length of 30 cm and a depth of 5cm bellow the sand. The plants rise from the cut pieces too or various divisions of bigger plants.
The preferable method for propagation is done by laying out a long stem on the ground and covered, leaving out 2- 3 cm in contact with soil. The plant forms roots easily as their nodes have the capacity to produce roots easily. Additively, when you grow from cuttings, 10 cm from the base is uprooted and kept into a potting mixture and must stay moist until the plant produces roots, Other different method is that the cuttings must be placed wherever we want them to grow in the garden following the same method with a condition but making sure it does not perish.
Pigface plants bear a red-purple berry fruit; the aborigine natives used it as a major source of food earlier. Their pulp’s taste are similar to salty apples. Roasted from of their leaves are used as a replacement of salt and also to obtain dietary salt. The fruits central part is appetizing . Base of the fruit is squeezed into mouth, if collected from beach tastes salty. Since the fruits are Aborigines famous ones they are ate as sweets.
Medicinal Uses & Health Benefits:
The plant is utilized for the anti-scurvy treatment which was in practice since the European Explorers arrival. The plants juice aids in soothing the pain caused by insect bites . The Carpobrotus glaucescens’s fruit juice is made us as a mild astringent. On external application to the skin it acts as a universal first aid medicament for jelly fish and similar stings. It helps in eradicating stomach based problems such as diarrhea and stomach cramps when coupled with water, Similar to that of aloe vera its application on skin heals skin based complications such as wounds, mosquito bites, sunburns and treatment for various skin conditions, Also treats tuberculosis when combined with honey and olive oil, The fruit holds laxative property so solves ringworm, eczema, dermatitis, herpes, thrush, cold sores, cracked lips, chafing, skin conditions and allergies, Traditional treatment for constipation when eaten with brackish water. Due to its laxative nature a syrup is prepared by the use of this fruit. A traditional medicament for TB is done by using a combination of equal proportions of leaf, juice, honey and olive oil mixed with water.
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.