Passion Flower (Passiflora caerulea)

Common Name Latin Name Plant Family
Passion Flower
Passiflora caerulea

This plant can be used as a rootstock for some of the less hardy members of this genus, conferring on them an additional cold tolerance. Be careful that root suckers do not take over from the grafted plant[200].

  • Medicinal Use

    None known

  • Edible Use

    Fruit – raw or cooked[2, 4, 105]. The unripe fruits are cooked[177], whilst the ripe fruits are eaten raw or made into a refreshing drink[183]. The flavour is not very desirable[3]. The fruit is about 6cm long and 4cm wide, it is partly hollow and contains a small amount of pleasant acid-tasting pulp surrounding a large quantity of seeds[K].

    The flowers can be made into a syrup.

  • Cautionary Notes

    None known

Cultivation & Habitat

Pre-soak the seed for 12 hours in warm water and then sow late winter or early spring in a warm greenhouse. If sown in January and grown on fast it can flower and fruit in its first year[88]. The seed germinates in 1 – 12 months at 20¡c. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle. It you are intending to grow the plants outdoors, it is probably best to keep them in the greenhouse for their first winter and plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Mulch the roots well in late autumn to protect them from the cold. Cuttings of young shoots, 15cm with a heel, in spring[1]. Leaf bud cuttings in spring. Cuttings of fully mature wood in early summer. Takes 3 months. High percentage[3].
Requires a well-drained soil with plenty of moisture in the growing season, otherwise it is not fussy[1, 200]. Dislikes highly alkaline soils[202]. Hardy to about -15¡c, if plants are cut down to the ground by frost they can regenerate from the base[200]. Very fast growing[11]. Roots of outdoor grown plants should be restricted to encourage fruiting[1]. Plants produce tendrils and climb by attaching these to other plants. The plant has a very long flowering period, from early summer to early autumn, though individual flowers only live for about 48 hours[245]. The flowers are open all night and start to close in the morning[260]. The flowers are delicately scented[245]. The cultivar ‘Constance Elliot’ is more fragrant[245]. If fruit is required, especially when the plant is grown indoors, it is best to hand pollinate using pollen from a flower that has been open for 12 hours to pollinate a newly opened flower before midday[88, 200]. The flowers open in sunny weather and do not open on dull cloudy days[219]. Fruit is only formed after long hot summers in Britain[166]. Plants are very tolerant of pruning and can be cut back to ground level if required to rejuvenate the plant[202]. Any pruning is best carried out in the spring[219]. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[200].
Central and Western S. America – Brazil.

Become ungovernable, break the chains of the matrix; grow and forage your own food and medicine.

*None of the information on this website qualifies as professional medical advice. Take only what resonates with your heart and use your own personal responsibility for what’s best for you. For more information [brackets] [000], see bibliography.