Passiflora caerulea

Passiflora caerulea

Passiflora caerulea is among the most frost resistant Passiflora. It can be grown in pot as a house-plant or outside up to zone USDA 8 (-10 °C) were it will lose its leaves in the winter. In tropical and subtropical climates it is an evergreen and flowers all year round.

Description:

Passiflora caerulea or Blue Passion Flower is a vigorous vine that can grow up to 10 m. The numerous tendrils sprout at every leaf base and allow it to climb any support.

Vine: glabrous; stem: subangular, striate, grooved; stipules: semiovate to subreniform,

Leaves: petioles 1,5-5 cm long, 5-7 lobed or occasionally 3-9 lobed, 5-16 cm long and 6-18 cm wide.

Flowers: peduncles 3-7 cm long, solitary. Bracts ovate to ovate-oblong, to 2,7 cm long en 2.3 cm wide, pale green, entire, free.

Flowers white, blue and blackish purple, up to 10 cm in diameter. Sepals: white inside, green outside, oblong, up to 3.5 cm long and 1.8 cm wide, slightly keeld outside, keel terminating in a short awn. Petals: white, oblong, up to 3.8 cm long and 1.4 cm wide. Corona, 4 series, blue at upper 1/3, white at middle and blackish purple at base. Outer 2 series up to 2.5 cm long, inner series up to 0.2 cm long.

Fruit: ovoid, 5-7 cm long and 3-4 cm wide,orange, edible.

Seeds: obcordate or cuneate, 0.6 cm long and 0.4 cm wide, coarsely reticulate.

Usage:

Fruit is edible but insipid.
The flower can be used as tea to treat anxiety and stress.

Nomenclature:

Common names:

Blue Crown Passionflower, Blue Passion Flower, Blue Passionflower, Blue-Crown Passionflower, Bluecrown Passionflower, Common Passion Flower, Hardy Passionflower

Synonyms:

Passiflora coerulea is not a synonym but an error: the Latin word caeruleus means blue
Passiflora caerulea var. angustifolia, Passiflora caerulea var. glauca, Passiflora caerulea var. glaucophylla, Passiflora caerulea var. imbricata, Passiflora caerulea var. regnellii, Passiflora loureiroi, Passiflora selloi

Etymology:

Passiflora: from the Latin passio (Passion) and flos (flower)
Caerulea: from the Latin caeruleus (blue)

Origin:

South America: Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay

Habitat:

On forest margins and in forest gaps and in riparian zones, 0-4,000 m altitude



Hardiness:

USDA zone 7-10, -15 °C and lower for well establish plants.

It is recommended to protect young plants in winter with a mulch layer.

Care:

Soil:

Fertile and well drained, grows on a variety of soils, except desert soils

Passiflora caerulea fruit

Passiflora caerulea fruit

Exposure:

Full sun

Water:

In pot, water daily in the summer

Feed:

Fertilise weekly in pot

Pot:

A smaller pot promotes flowering and inhibits root growth

Propagation:

Seed, Cutting

Sowing instructions:

  • use fresh seeds
  • scarify the seeds with sandpaper or sand
  • soak the seeds in water at room temperature for 24h
  • plant in sowing substrate at 1 cm depth
  • provide soil heating and switch the heating off at night so that the temperature fluctuates
  • keep the substrate moist
  • do not discard the seeds if they have not germinated after a few months, it can take more than 6 months

Image sources

  • Passiflora caerulea: Kuribo
  • Passiflora caerulea fruit: Taka

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