Passiflora diaden Vell.
Passiflora gratissima A. St.-Hil.
Passiflora incarnata L.
Passiflora iodocarpa Barb. Rodr.
Passiflora middletoniana Paxton
Passiflora minima Blanco
Passiflora pallidiflora Bertol.
Passiflora picroderma Barb. Rodr.
Passiflora pomifera M. Roem.
Passiflora rigidula J. Jacq.
Passiflora rubricaulis Jacq.
Passiflora vernicosa Barb. Rodr.
Passiflora verrucifera Lindl.
Common Name: Passion Fruit
Fruits, flower and leaves
Photograph by: Johnocampo
Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0
Passiflora edulis is a stout-stemmed, evergreen climbing shrub, producing stems 9 metres or more long that scramble over the ground or clamber into other plants for support, attaching itself by means of coiling tendrils[
The edible fruit is greatly appreciated and the plant is commonly cultivated in the tropics and subtropics[
]. The fruit has a tough skin which means it can be exported worldwide and remain in good condition. This species is the most commonly cultivated of the passion fruits[
S. America - Brazil, Paraguay and northern Argentina.
Edges of rain forests[
|Cultivation Status||Cultivated, Wild
Although it is a subtropical species, the passion fruit can also be grown at lower elevations in tropical areas[
]. It can be grown between sea level and 900 metres in the subtropics, and from 900 - 2,000 metres or even higher in the tropics[
]. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 20 - 30°c, but can tolerate 18 - 34°c[
]. When dormant, the mature plant can survive temperatures down to about -2°c, but young growth cannot tolerate any frost[
]. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 900 - 2,000mm, but tolerates 600 - 2,500mm[
Requires a humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil and a position in dappled shade[
]. Requires a well-drained soil with plenty of moisture in the growing season, otherwise it is not fussy[
]. Passiflora species tend to flower and fruit more freely when grown in soils of only moderate fertility[
]. Prefers a circumneutral soil, disliking very acid or very alkaline conditions[
]. Prefers a pH in the range 6 - 8, tolerating 5.5 - 8.5[
]. Prefers a position sheltered from cold winds[
The plant has naturalised and become invasive in many countries, including New Zealand and South Africa[
Seedling plants can commence fruiting within 1 - 2 years, cuttings can start fruiting in the same year[
Plants have a commercially economic lifespan of 3 - 6 years[
Two crops a year are normally produced[
Average annual yield of fruit may be about 8 - 15 tonnes per hectare, but yields up to 50 tonnes have been reported from Kenya[
A shallow-rooted plant[
Flowers shed their pollen before the pistils are receptive and so plants need another cultivar flowering at a slightly different time in order to fertilize the flowers[
]. The species is self-fertile, though some of its forms, such as Flavicarpa, require cross-pollination[
Plants are very tolerant of pruning and can be cut back to ground level if required to rejuvenate the plant[
]. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[
There are two distinct forms of this species:-
P. Edulis edulis is the type species. It has purple fruits and occurs in cooler regions and at higher altitudes in the tropics.
P. Edulis flavicarpa has larger, yellow fruits. It is native to the tropical lowlands.
There are some named varieties of each form[
Fruit - raw or cooked. An agreeable cooling taste[
], somewhat like an orange with a mixture of acid[
]. The ripe aromatic fruit is allowed to wrinkle and develop sweetness, it is then eaten raw, juiced, made into a syrup or used in sauces, cakes, ice creams, sherbets etc[
]. A rich source of vitamin C[
]. The ovoid fruit is about 5cm in diameter[
An edible oil is obtained from the seed[
Leaves - cooked[
]. Occasionally used as a vegetable[
The pulp of the fruit is stimulant and tonic[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe along with the pulp which will help break down the seed coat and speed up germination[
]. Stored seed should be soaked for 24 hours in warm water and germination time can be reduced if the seed is then mixed with the juice of a fresh passion fruit (of any species)[
]. Even so, it can take 12 months for stored seed to germinate[
]. Place the seed tray in a shady position, maintaining a temperature around 19 - 24c[
]. Prick the seedlings out into individual containers as soon as they are large enough to handle and plant out when large enough[
Cuttings of young shoots, taken at the nodes. The cuttings root best in a neutral to slightly acid compost, but 100% sharp sand also produces good results[
Cuttings of fully mature wood taken at a node. They can take 3 months, but there is usually a high percentage[
Layering. Very easy[