Passionflower

There are about 400 species of passionfruit. Many are ornamental, tendrilled climbers, some produce delicious fruit. Most require warm-temperate to tropical conditions. Deciduous in colder areas, it can survive occasional winter freezes.

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photograph sourced from Wikipedia

A common wild flower in the southern United States, it was used as a tonic by Native Americans, and it was first noted by a Western doctor in 1783. The leaves are palmately divided with 3 to 5 smooth, textured, pointed lobes with serrated margins. The fragrant large flowers are lavender-coloured, with a white centre and a deeper purple, thread like corona. The fruits, ovoid yellow berries when ripe, are about 5cm long.

It prefers a light, acidic soil and a warm, sunny position. In cooler areas it is an excellent greenhouse plant. Sow passionflower seed in spring when the soil has warmed. Or propagate by semi-ripe stem cuttings in summer, or by layering. Provide a trellis or other support, and mulch plants well. Shape and prune the vine as necessary in spring.

Pick the fruits at the ‘dropping’ stage. The seeds and the pulp of ripe fruits have a tangy flavour, and are eaten raw or used in fruit salads and other desserts, curds, jams, jellies and fruit drinks. The popular cocktail called the Hurricane is made with passionfruit syrup, rum and lime juice.

information sourced from The Complete Book of Herbs

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About Tandy Sinclair

I am passionate about regional, sustainable and seasonal produce. I live in Gordons Bay in a cottage with my husband, our three dogs, a tortoise and a fish. We are busy building a house which is an adventure all in itself. Each year we visit a new place to experience the food of the area.

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Passionflower — 22 Comments

  1. Beautiful Tandy, I love having them in the garden, even if the fruit never ripen this far north !! And now I’m off to check out that mackerel recipe you linked to from a year ago :)

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  2. What a beautiful flower, I say! I have never seen them before though!

    Thanks for the tips how to use passionfruit too! :)

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    • I have one plant in my garden but it is in the wrong place and the wind keeps on taking the flowers before they can fruit :)

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