This species has sometimes been confused with Passiflora suberosa L.[
]. The species differ in leaf shape, and particularly in their fruits - in Passiflora gracilis they are red to purple and around 25mm in diameter whilst in Passiflora suberosa they are bluish-black and only around 12mm in diameter[
Cieca gracilis (J.Jacq. ex Link) M.Roem.
Passiflora pediculata Mast.
Passiflora gracilis is an annual, climbing plant with very slender, branched stems that can grow 2 metres or more long[
]. The stems scramble over the ground, climbing into nearby vegetation where it supports itself by means of tendrils.
The fruit is said to be edible. The plant is often grown as an ornamental in gardens, valued for its abundant flowering and masses of bright scarlet fruits[
S. America - ?Venezuela.
A species for higher elevations in the tropics, where it grows up to 1,500 metres[
]. It can be cultivated in cooler climes, succeeding even in warm temperate areas where the growing season is long enough to mature the fruit.
Grows best in a position that is sheltered at least from the hottest sun of the day, growing in nature in the dappled shade of other plants[
]. It prefers a well-drained soil on the light side, succeeding in conditions of low fertility but not growing well in heavy clays[
]. Prefers a pH in the range 6.5 - 7.5[
Plants usually self-sow, even in cultivation in frost-free climates. In cooler areas it is important to save seed from the earlier ripening fruits and store them in a frost-free place before resowing when the warm season returns[
]. The purple, subglobose berry is about 25mm long[
Seed - germinates easily. Sow in a lightly shaded position in a container and only just cover. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when large enough to handle and grow on until large enough to plant out. If you have sufficient seed, then a sowing in situ is usually successful.
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