It has been proposed, Hershkovitz, M. A. 1998. Parakeelya: a new genus segregated from Calandrinia (Portulacaceae) (Phytologia) 84:101; that the Australian members of the genus Calandrinia should be transferred to the genus Parakeelya. Whilst this proposal has been accepted by some authorities (including the GRIN database) most authorities (including various Australian Flora) are continuing to use Calandrinia. For the time being (2016), we are also maintaining these species within the genus Calandrinia[
Parakeelya polyandra (Benth.) Hershk.
Talinum polyandrum Hook.
Common Name: Parakeelya
Calandrinia polyandra is a succulent annual plant with a decumbent, much-branched stem; it can grow 10 - 40cm tall[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food.
The plant contains oxalic acid, so it should only be used in moderation[
]. Oxalic acid can lock up certain of the nutrients in food and, if eaten in excess, can lead to nutritional deficiencies. It is, however, perfectly safe in small amounts and its acid taste adds a nice flavour to salads. Cooking the plant will reduce the quantity of oxalic acid. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones and hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet since it can aggravate their condition[
Australia - Western Australia
], often around salt lakes. Floodplains and stony plains in sandy and loamy soils in Western Australia[
Calandrinia polyandra is a plant of arid areas in the warm temperate to subtropical regions of Western Australia.
Prefers a hot sunny situation on a poor dry sandy soil[
Plants are intolerant of root disturbance, they are best treated as half-hardy annuals and sown in situ in late spring[
]. In frosty climates this species can become a self-sowing annual, the seed germinating in spring[
Leaves - raw. The leaves contain oxalic acid and so some caution is advised, see the notes above on toxicity.
Seed - raw or ground into a meal[
]. The seed is very small and fiddly to harvest, especially since it ripens intermittently over a period of several weeks[
Root - raw or cooked[
Seed - best sown in situ in spring since it strongly resents root disturbance. Germination usually takes place within 1 - 3 weeks at 20°c[