The roots of the passion flower are prone to rot in cold and wet conditions,
they need special care in winter. Ideal compost is a free-draining, soil-based
mixture of equal parts sharp sand or gravel, medium or coarse peat, and loam. If
grown outside, the passion flower needs a well-drained, dry, and slightly acidic
soil. Full sun is essential.
Frost, in long spells, can damage the passion flower’s roots. In such
conditions, it may be advisable to place some heat around the roots.
The passion flower can be propagated by seed, or by cuttings. Seeds from the
passion fruit can be grown either under glass or in a tub placed outside from
May to September. After removing the arils (outer covering) from the seed, they
should be sown onto a standard potting compost. Germination occurs within two to
three weeks. Plenty of water and monthly feeding is required till the plant
The beauty of its flowers, and the unique flavors of its fruit, have made the
passion flower a popular choice for cultivation over the centuries.
Hybridization has been extensive. The passion fruit or maracujŠ vine of
commerce, Passiflora edulis, is cultivated extensively in the Caribbean,
south Florida, and South Africa for its fruit. The maypop, Passiflora
incarnata, is grown in gardens in southern United States.
The Chilean passiflora, Passiflora pinnatistipula, grows in the Andes,
from Venezuela to Chile, in high altitudes (2,500 to 3,800 meters), and in
coastal central Chile. This species is grown in the similar climatic conditions
of Monterey Bay, San Francisco, and the western coast of the U.S.
Passion Flower – Cultivation and Propogation
The passion flower (Passiflora) is a perennial vine that grows in the
wild, in well-drained areas. It is found abundantly on the slopes of the Andes,
the floor of the rainforest, and in roadside rubble in arid conditions.
Because it enjoys an arid environment, the passion flower is relatively easy to
grow - more so in conservatories and greenhouses than as indoor plants. The root
system is small and when grown in fair-sized pots (about 10 inches), the passion
flower can grow to a decent height. As the passion flower is a climbing vine, a
trellis is required for support.
For germination, fresh seed works best. The seeds need to be sandpapered and
soaked in tepid water for a day. They then need to be sowed 2-5 mm deep in a
peat or soil-based seed compost. Temperature is critical and should be
maintained at 20 degrees C (68 degrees F) for 16 hours and 30 degrees c (86
degrees F) for 8 hours a day. Fresh seeds germinate in two to four weeks. Older
seed takes almost double the time.
For cultivation, cuttings of the passion flower can also be used. They are
easily rooted from the plant, and best taken in early spring. A cutting of the
tip or end shoot of the passion flower is ideal. It is important to cut close
below the node of the first or second mature leaf from the end shoot. After
removing the bottom leaf and all tendrils and flower stalks, the cut end must be
dipped in rooting powder and then inserted a half-inch deep into the compost.
Nodal cuttings are also useful. They should be two or three leaves long with
the bottom leaf and tendril removed. Numerous cuttings are possible from one