Passionflower | Passiflora

This tropical climber which is a member of the Passifloraceae family is famous for its exotic, fragrant flowers with stalked ovaries and striking corona of filaments. These filaments are often arranged in bands of different colours. The yellowish fruits are edible. The best-known ornamental varieties include P. cacrulea with white to pink petals and R. racemosa with crimson flowers.

Passion flowers thrive in a warm, sunny position where they are protected from direct midday sun. They should be watered according to the ambient temperature because they hate dry conditions as much as excessive moisture. They benefit from weekly applications of fertilizer until the autumn. In milder climates they can remain outdoors if protected against the cold. However, it is safer to move them to a bright, well-ventilated place where the temperature ranges between 5-10° C (41-50° F).

Specimens trained against a trellis can be cut back before being taken indoors. Plants can be raised from seed in spring and propagated from semi-ripe cuttings in summer.

29. September 2014 by Dave Pinkney
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