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"How to Grow",  All Things Garden

How to Grow Purple Passion Fruit vs. Maypops: The Ultimate Guide

Did you know that there are literally hundreds of stunning, exotic-looking passion flower varieties, but only a handful that will that actually produce edible fruit? Yep – that’s right! The two most common fruiting passion flower are Passiflora edulis (which has both a purple and yellow species, along with hybrids) and Passiflora incarnata – also known as “Maypops”. 

Read along to learn how to grow edible passion fruit vines – including their preferred climate and conditions, starting with seeds versus seedlings, pollination, pests, and tips for ongoing care. We’ll also discuss the key differences between Passiflora edulis and Passiflora incarnata, so you can decide which will best suit your garden. And we won’t forget the best part – how to harvest and eat passionfruit!


Passion fruit is sweet, tart, tangy, and downright delicious. It is nature’s sour candy! For us, growing passionfruit is also dual purpose. We adore the antioxidant-rich, low-glycemic index fruit – but also enjoy the vigorous, lush climbing vines. They are evergreen in our climate, and make for excellent privacy screens. We have 9 passion fruit vines covering arches and trellises that serve as “green walls” all over our property! Yet they do require maintenance, and have the tendency to be invasive. We’ll talk about pruning too. 



A red flowering passion fruit vines flower is the feature of the image. It has red pistils and a stamen  that extends from the center of the flower which has four separate pollen sacks that hang down from their own arms attached to the end. The background has a stone pathway and stone lined planting areas. The sun is shining through a slated fence, casting bars of sunshine on the back wall.
One our gorgeous but non-edible passionflower plants: Passiflora vitafolia ‘Scarlet Flame’


What is the difference between Passiflora edulis and Passiflora incarnata?


Before we go much further, let’s simplify things. From here on out, I will refer to Passiflora edulis as “passion fruit”, and call Passiflora incarnata by its common name – “maypops”. Sound good? Okay.  Think of passion fruit and maypops like cousins. They’re related, but have some notable differences


Growing Climate

Maypops are native to North America, whereas passion fruit is native to South America. Thus, maypops are more cold-tolerant than their sub-tropical passion fruit cousins. Maypops are generally hardy down to USDA zone 6. I have heard rumors of them growing in zone 5 as well, if they’re planted in a sheltered, south-facing location. The vines will die back after the first hard frost, but bounce back with a vengeance the following spring – especially if they’re well established and protected with extra mulch. Despite their US-native status, maypops are considered invasive by some due to their zealous growing habits.

Passion fruit are more tender, and thrive in frost-free climates. USDA hardiness zones 9-11 are ideal for passion fruit, though some hybrid varieties are more cold-tolerant and will survive an occasional dip below 30 degrees. “Frederick” purple passion fruit is one such variety, and is advertised as being hardy down to zone 8b. Where winters are mild, passion fruit will remain an evergreen vine. In places with a bit of frost, it will likely lose some of its leaves over winter. 

On the other hand, the less common yellow passion fruit (Passiflora edulis f. flavicarpa) are significantly more tropical and do not tolerate freezing at all. These are the types of passion fruit commonly found in Hawaii – also called Lilikoi on the islands. Surprisingly, despite their more tropical tendencies, it is said that yellow passion fruit is slightly more bitter and acidic than the purple variety.


Aren’t sure of your hardiness zone? Use this easy look-up tool


A hand is holding a Fredrick passion fruit, it is large, just bigger than a baseball and it is a beautiful purple color. The background shows the passion vine from which it came from and it is big, lush, and green. You can see a ripening passion fruit on the vine, adorning the plant like an ornament. Next to the vine there is a green house with some young seedlings growing on one of the potting benches inside.
A large “Frederick” purple passion fruit, and its evergreen vine in the background – serving as a wonderful privacy screen from our neighbors beyond.



Flowers

Both passion fruit and maypop flowers are out-of-this-world gorgeous. Really, they look like alien flowers! You can tell the difference between the two by the significantly more lavender hue on the maypops, including their frilly bits, whereas passionfruit has white frills and petals with a purple center. The yellow variation of passion fruit look like the purple, mostly white flowers as well. 

Aside from being native, another huge one-up the maypop has over passion fruit is that their flowers are medicinally beneficial! Soothing Passiflora incarnata is used by herbalists to reduce anxiety, pain, insomnia, ADHD, and inflammation. Both the maypop flowers and fresh leaves can be dried and used to make calming teas, tinctures, and infusions. They can also be used topically as poultices to heal cuts and bruises.

I will state for the record that I am not a trained herbalist. However, I have poured over many resources, and cannot find anything that suggests that purple passion fruit (P. edulis) flowers should be used for medicinal purposes. On the contrary, I found that they could potentially be slightly toxic if ingested. If you know otherwise, please correct me if I am wrong here! But that is the conclusion I have come to. 


A Frederick passion fruit flower is the center of the image. The flower looks like something from outer space, the top part of the flower has three arms extending from a center ball, these are the parts that will receive pollen for pollination. Directly below that are five arms extending out with rectangular plates at the ends of each which is where the pollen is produced. Underneath that lies the main flower which has many pistils that extend from the center of the flower outwards about and inch or two. These are purple in the center and turn white as it gets towards the end. There are petals that are below that with similar coloration, purple in the center fading towards white at the ends. There are two other passion fruit flowers in the background, along with close to a dozen green passion fruit, all attached to the passion fruit vine.
Passilfora edulis flowers are more white and deep purple. These are Frederick purple passion flowers, and the yellow variety looks very similar as well. See the difference to Maypops below.
An image of a Maypop flower, it looks very similar to a passion fruit flower, however, it is mostly a dark lavender color. It is extremely beautiful, just slightly less variation in colors.
Passiflora incarnata or “maypop” bloom. Much more lavender than a P. edulis! Photo courtesy of Wikipedia


Fruit

While the maypop has the passion fruit beat with its flower power, the opposite is true when it comes to fruit. Truth be told, I have never tasted a maypop since they are not common here. But from what I have read and heard, passion fruit is significantly more sweet and tropical in flavor than the maypop. Furthermore, passion fruit can grow larger in size and are often more juicy inside. Especially the Frederick variety, which can get huge. That isn’t to say that maypops aren’t still awesome though! It is just a known difference. 

Both passion fruit and maypops are egg-shaped, and filled with seedy pulp that is both sweet and sour in flavor. Underripe maypops can be particularly sour. The aroma of a ripe purple passion fruit smells like you died and went to tropical heaven! Due to the large black edible seeds, the texture is crunchy – though some folks choose to spit out the seeds. The pulp can also be juiced to separate out the seeds.


A hand is holding a passion fruit that has been cut in half along its equator. The outer edge is purple from the skin of the passion fruit, the inner part of the shell is whitish pink, and the inner fruit portion is a golden tropical pulp that is extremely fragrant and delicious. The center is made up of many seeds that are each surrounded by the golden pulp which can be strained and separated into its own juice, or it can be eaten with the seeds. The background is a foxtail fern with many arms extending out and in many directions, with green gravel walkway below that.



Lifespan & Fruiting Time

Unfortunately, your fruiting passion plants will not live forever! The passion flower vines that do not produce fruit can live for a decade or longer, while fruiting varieties have a shorter life span. Both passion fruit and maypops can take a year or two of growth before they begin to bear fruit, and will begin to produce fewer fruit as they age past their prime. In commercial settings, farmers replace vines every 3 to 5 years.

Purple passion fruit vines have a reported lifespan of about 5 to 7 years. Yet our oldest vine is about four years old now and isn’t slowing down on fruit yet! It is developing more and more woody undergrowth however, which is a sign of aging – as it will not sprout new growth from those areas. Maypops are also described as a “short-lived perennial” that live for several years and then slow or die. 


The image is take between two trellises that contain passion fruit vines on each. It is framed with vines and hanging passion fruit, most of which are still green and need to ripen. What lies beyond that is a garden full of pollinator plants of all types and colors. There are also four raised wooden garden beds laid out, some have young plants inside and one has more mature plants growing in it. Beyond that there is a house with various plants on the porch and one is even attached to the wall next to the door.
It will be a sad day when these babies die back!


Now that you have a better understanding of which type of Passiflora you are interested and able to grow, let’s dig into the details.



HOW TO GROW PASSION FRUIT


GETTING STARTED


When it comes to starting your passion fruit (or maypop) plant, you have a few different options. 


Growing Passion fruit from seed

One way to grow passion fruit is to start the plant from seed. To do so, it is best to use fresh seed – right from a ripe fruit! You can even use seeds from store-bought fruit* (see note below). For passion fruit, simply collect a handful of seeds from inside the fruit, rinse and wipe them down well to remove the pulpy coating, and plant them. In contrast, fresh maypop seeds must be refrigerated for 12 weeks (or kept outside in freezing weather) to induce germination – called cold stratification. Store stratifying seeds in damp sand to prevent them from drying out. 

Passion fruit seeds should be planted 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep in seedling start mix or loose, fluffy potting soil, and then kept damp and warm until they sprout – which is how most seeds are started. A seedling heat mat may come in handy. Patience is key here, because even the freshest seeds can take 10 to 20 days to germinate. Older dry seeds can take months! Soaking dry seeds for a day or two before planting can help promote sprouting. The same applies for maypops. 

*Note: The one caveat here is that seeds you collect must come variety of passion fruit that is not a hybrid. Hybrid seeds will not breed true – meaning they probably won’t “grow up” to be like their parent plant. Though they all weren’t perfectly marked, I believe most of our passion fruit vines are a Frederick hybrid, thus we can’t seed-save from them.


If you are unsure of the exact variety, it may be more worthwhile to either buy seed from a reputable source, or seek out a started plant. 


Passion fruit cuttings or seedlings

If you know someone who has a passion fruit vine, see if you can snag a cutting from them! The tips of new vine growth will be most vigorous and easy to propagate. Obtain a cutting that has at least several leaves and tendrils above a node, around 6 to 8 inches long. Then, dip the cut end of the vine in rooting hormone or fresh aloe vera gel, and plant it in a container of well-draining but consistently damp potting soil. Hopefully, roots will take form and the cutting will flourish.

A similar, even easier option is to buy a started seedling or young plant. That is – it’s easier if you can find them! We’ve had great luck; our local nurseries almost always carry them. A few times they have been out of stock, but happily put in a special order for us. Feel free to ask your local nursery or garden center to do the same! And by “local nursery”, I mean the smaller operations. You’ll probably have better luck there than at big box stores. Alternatively, you could try to order a started passion fruit vine online. 



How many vines do I need? About passion fruit pollination

Good news! Both purple passion fruit and maypops are self-fertile. This means they do not need a partner plant to get pollinated and bear fruit. Since passion fruit vines can become so monstrous in size, this will come as welcome news for folks gardening in small spaces. In contrast, the yellow passion fruit variety is self-sterile and requires cross-pollination from another cultivar of passion fruit planted nearby. 

While the blooms can be pollinated by themselves, the pollen is still required to be moved around the flower – transferred from the anther to the stigma. Because passion fruit pollen is rather thick and sticky, wind doesn’t always do the trick. Instead, carpenter bees and honey bees are the primary pollinators for passion fruit. This means you need bees in your yard! For ideas on how to attract more bees to your garden, see this article: “Top 23 Plants for Pollinators: Attract Bees, Butterflies, and Hummingbirds”.

Without bees, you may have to hand-pollinate your passion fruit – which is an easy but somewhat tedious task! Years ago, I hand-pollinated some of our passion flowers for fun, but have not found it necessary. We get gobs of fruit! Yet if your plants need a little help, check out this tutorial to learn how to hand-pollinate passion fruit flowers.


So you have your baby vine, one way or another… Ready to plant?  



PLANTING LOCATION & CONDITIONS


As you prepare to plant your passion fruit vine, keep these things in mind in regards to choosing a location:


Support

Passion fruit and maypops need something to climb. Plan to provide support in the form of a trellis, arch, arbor, or other sturdy structure. Personally, we avoid growing them on the property perimeter fences – as we worry about the weight, and access or maintenance from the other side. Instead, we prefer to give them their own dedicated structure to take over. See how we make two different types of sturdy, inexpensive trellises in this step-by-step tutorial!

They are vigorous growers. I can’t stress this enough. Passion fruit and maypops can grow up to 20 feet per year under ideal growing conditions! If allowed, they will wrap up and smother other plants and even trees. Plan a location with ample space, and easy access for pruning as needed.


A two part before and after image, the first image shows a newly constructed patio garden where raised wooden garden beds are placed around the outside edge of a concrete patio. The walkway to the backyard has a separation between two garden beds that is lined with stone pavers. There is a gate that is attached to the closest garden beds to help keep out the chickens which are in the grass just beyond the gate itself. The walkway is also underneath an arch that was placed in each of the two closest garden beds. There is a young passion fruit vine planted on each end of the arch, soon it will be a covered arched walkway. The second image shows the same image after it has been allowed to grow in after several years. The archway is now lush and green and it is very full. Just beyond the archway, there is another arch along the fence line that has tow young passion vines growing in the same manner. There are chickens outside the inner garden area with various plants and trees growing in and around the area.
Double passion fruit arches. In the top “before” image, you can see young vines planted at the base of both arches, just starting to climb. Two years later, the arches are covered and need to be routinely pruned. These are some of our smaller passion fruit vines.


Sun & Shelter

Despite their differences in cold hardiness, both passion fruit and maypop have similar preferences when it comes to sun and shelter. They will grow in locations that receive full sun to partial shade. The vines will flower the most when provided adequate sun – at least 6 hours. However, they are both sensitive to wind, and are prone to sunburning in the hot afternoon sun. 

Therefore, I suggest to plant your vines in a semi-sheltered location – especially if you’re pushing the limits with your growing zone!  Our most lush, large, productive vine is tucked away on our side yard between a fence and the house, and receives morning to midday sun and afternoon shade. On the other hand, we have some vines that get full sun all day, and they’re doing just fine. They do turn a bit yellow on top in the summer to fall. 


A two part image collage, the first image shows four raised garden beds, surrounded by green gravel. Beyond that there is a wooden terrace with two levels, the first level has various pollinator plants planted in it. The second top level has six trellises spaced along the fence, the trellises are bare although you can make out small plants growing up each one. The plants are an assortment of fruiting and flowering passion fruit vines.
The second image shows the same area but after many years of growth. The back trellis wall is now a green wall of vines. The other pollinator plants have continued to grow and are much larger than before. The entire area is much more green and lush than the previous image.
When we first planted our “wall” of passion fruit vines along the backside of the front yard garden (late 2015) versus early 2019. While they do receive full sun most of the day, they are still semi-protected from wind by the (now-improved) fence behind them.


Soil

Passion fruit prefer soil that is moderately rich and well-draining. Clay soils, containers with inadequate drainage, or standing water can lead to rot, disease, and death. Your best best is to amend the planting area with some fluffy potting soil and plenty of well-aged compost, mixed in with some of your native soil. If they aren’t there already naturally, consider adding some worms to the area as well! They’ll help continue to enrich and aerate the soil for you. 

Aside from compost, don’t worry too much about fertilizer at the time of planting. We don’t want to shock the young freshly transplanted vines! We’ll do more amending later. Instead, you could water the new vines with a dilute seaweed extract, mild compost tea, or aloe vera soil drench for a nice and gentle jump start. These plants are both fairly shallow-rooted, so mulch them well to prevent the top few inches of soil from becoming overly dry. 


A passion fruit vine is shown, there are some green and ripening passion fruit on the vine and there are five purple and ripe passion fruit on the ground below. Once passion fruit ripen, they release themselves from the plant and usually end up on the ground or they get stuck in the vine itself on the way down. The surrounding ground area is made up of rock gravel and flagstone pathways.
This vine had bark mulch around its base when it was young, with rocks mulching the greater around it for moisture retention. With time, passion vines mulch themselves with leaf litter and a heavy canopy. The main stem that is growing from the ground is somewhere in the middle.


Planting Time

In a mild frost-free climate, there is really no “bad time” to plant a passion fruit vine. We’ve planted ours in various times of year and never had any issues. However, keep in mind that vines planted towards the end of fall or during winter will grow a little slower at first than those planted in the spring. I would avoid planting out a tender young vine in the middle of your hottest months, especially if it is in a location with full sun. 

Plant young maypops in the spring, after the last risk of frost has passed. This will provide them as much time possible to get established before frost comes the following fall or winter. The same applies for those growing passion fruit in zones 8 or 9.


Growing Passion Fruit in a Container

Passion fruit and maypops alike “can” be grown in containers. I put “can” in quotes because while they will survive, they won’t necessarily thrive. We have two passion fruit vines planted in the end of raised beds that are 2 feet deep and 2 feet wide. They look beautiful and lush, flower some, but produce less fruit than our other in-ground vines – and those are large “containers”! 

Growing passion fruit in containers is possible, but will take a little more work. As with most plants, passion fruit are happiest in the ground where their roots can freely roam. Therefore, if you do opt to grow a passion fruit vine in a container, provide a large container with ample room. Container width is important, since they have shallow root systems and will appreciate room to grow outward. 

The chosen container should have good drainage to prevent standing water and rotting roots. Use a light potting soil amended with compost. It is important to establish a consistent watering schedule, maintaining the soil moist but not soggy. Containerized plants generally require more frequent fertilizing than those in the ground, since they have a limited space and nutrient reserve to draw from. Therefore, I suggest to double the frequency of our fertilizing recommendations provided below. 



ONGOING CARE


Water 

Passion fruit and maypops will perform best with regular and moderate water, especially in the warm summer months or while actively growing fruit! Maintain the soil damp but not soggy. However, they are considered “fairly drought tolerant”. Meaning, they shouldn’t shrivel up and die if they’re pushed to the dry side on occasion. Since they’re somewhat prone to root rot and fungal disease, they’d prefer dry over drowning! Our passion fruit vines are on a drip system that gives them a little drink 3 times per week – in varying amounts depending on the season.


Fertilizing Passion Fruit

Passion fruit has a reputation for being a “heavy feeder”. We haven’t found that they need anything too crazy in terms of fertilizer though – especially if you start them out with good soil in their planting location! For our vines, we feed them a few cups of homemade compost tea about twice per year. See this article for a tutorial on how to make actively aerated compost tea.

Additionally, we top-dress the soil around the base of the vines with a mixture of slow-release fertilizers like kelp meal, alfalfa meal, and neem meal in the springtime, which gets watered in. Plus, the worms are down in there doing good work for us! In all, I suggest providing supplemental food in the form of a well-balanced, mild fertilizer at least once or twice per year. Maypops will benefit the most from spring feeding.


Pruning Passion Fruit

When people ask me how and when we prune our passion fruit vines, I usually respond with a laugh and a “Hack at them whenever I get a chance!” It is best to do your hardest passion fruit pruning after the bumper crop harvest. For us, that means in mid to late winter. However, we need to lightly cut back our vines several times a year to stop their rampant spread to unwanted areas. I avoid cutting too much right as the largest flush of flowers and fruit begin in late summer.

When the vines are still small you won’t have to do much pruning, though topping or pinching back a tall singular vine will encourage branching and bushiness. As they grow larger and attempt to extend past their designated structures, trim away new unwanted growth with pruning shears. You can also cut out older weak growth, but avoid cutting the main stem or trunk of the vine. Pruning actually encourages new growth, thicker stems, branching, and more future fruit, so don’t worry about “taking too much”! 

For maypops, prune them in the early spring. Remove dead foliage and broken stems, but always keep at least one or two strong main vines growing from the base of the plant to regenerate.


The back patio garden is shown with the green and lush passion vine archway in full glory. The surrounding area is very green as well with kale, agave, salvia, marigolds, nasturtium, lavender, and various trees throughout. There are also three chickens standing just outside the archway gate looking in.
For all the unruly bits around the edges, I can either lop them off with shears or tuck in the ends. Sometimes, I just grab a vine end and yank it! Ha.


Passion Fruit Pests & Disease


Gulf Fritillary

Have you heard the phrase “the difference between a weed and flower is a judgement”? Well, you may be faced with a similar judgement when it comes to pests and passion fruit vines. Passion fruit (and maypop) is the one and only host plant for a pretty little orange butterfly called the Gulf Fritillary.

Like milkweed to monarchs, the Gulf Fritillary caterpillars only feed on passion vines – though their adult butterflies do drink nectar from many types of flowers. These caterpillars can be seen as a pest as they munch down your precious passion fruit plant. From what I hear, they can do some significant damage too! But you know, it is the strangest thing… We see Gulf Fritillary butterflies in our yard quite often, but never notice caterpillar damage on our vines! Maybe the vines are so large and lush that we just can’t see it? 

If you do notice damage to your vines, it is going to be a judgement call on how you want to proceed. If it is towards the end of the season and you’re growing maypops, I say leave them. They vines are going to die back soon anyways! If you do have the desire to remove them, you could either hand-pick the caterpillars off and dispose of them, or use an organic Bt-based spray. Bt stands for a bacteria called Bacillus Thuringiensis, and it only harms caterpillars. Take caution to avoid overspray, and use as directed!


A two part image of a Gulf Fritillary butterfly and the second image is it as a caterpillar. The butterfly is bright orange with various black marking along its wings while the caterpillar is orange with many black spike protruding from the body. This insect uses the passion fruit vines as a host plant, the caterpillar uses it as its main source of food and can munch holes in the plant material.
Gulf Fritillary butterfly and larvae. Photos courtesy of University of Florida


Other Pests or Diseases

It is not uncommon to see ants on passion fruit vines. Ants feed on the nectaries – glands outside of the flower that produce nectar – and may also be helping with pollination! We have ants on our passion fruit vines and don’t intervene.

Additionally, our thick vines are prone to mealybug infestations. To help control that, we periodically release American ladybugs and another type of lady beetle – mealybug destroyers. 

Other diseases that may affect passion fruit include fungal, Fusarium wilt, crown rot, scab, and other viral diseases. Overall, the are fairly hardy plants – and many of these issues can be prevented with good routine care like we’ve discussed today!



Harvesting Passion Fruit

Get ready for your maypops to ripen up in late summer to early fall! Passion fruit are often ripening around the same time, but timing can vary more in mild climates that lack freezing winters. For example, several of my San Diego friends informed me that their “bumper crop” is usually finishing up during August and September, while ours will occur from October to December a few hours north here on the Central Coast.

Both fruits take several months to mature, and start as small, green, egg-shaped fruit. With time, maypops turn yellowish in color near harvest. Purple passion fruit on the other hand turn sky blue! Just kidding. They turn purple. 

One of my absolute favorite things to do in the garden is harvest passion fruit – because it is damn fun and EASY! See, passion fruit is self-harvesting. When they’re ripe, they simply fall off the vine naturally. Then we get to go around with a basket and collect them from the ground, like an easter egg hunt! Every day. For months. Large thick vines will benefit from an occasional shake of the trellis to dislodge any ripe fruit stuck in their masses. 

Maypops will also drop from their vines when mature. Or, you can harvest them when they’ve become yellow, wrinkled, and easily pull off the vine. Wrinkling is a key indicator of ripeness for maypops, and they can be quite sour when they’re underripe. Passion fruit on the other hand doesn’t need to wrinkle, though it may. As long as it is a nice purple color and came off the vine, it is ready to enjoy!


A wicker basket full of ripe passion fruit is shown, some are have slightly wrinkles skin which signifies that the fruit has been off the vine longer than others. One of the fruits is cut open and displayed on top of the mound of fruit, illustrating the bright golden pulp within. The basket is sitting on a pave which is lined with green gravel.
Ripe purple passion fruit.
Maypops are lined up on a cutting board with ripe fruit on the right and non ripe fruit on the left. The pulp inside is more whitish yellow and isn't quite as vibrant as the passion fruit. The less ripe fruit pulp is all white and isn't quite as juicy as its ripe counterpart. The exterior of the fruit is also green in color compared to the purple of the passion fruit.
Ripe versus underripe Maypop passion fruit. Photo courtesy of Garden Cuizine.


Eating Passionfruit

Our favorite way to eat passion fruit is with spoon, straight from the shell – seeds and all! It is mouth-puckering but decadent. We also frequently scoop out the pulp to enjoy on top of granola with various nuts and seeds. Passion fruit is also excellent juiced, and added to kombucha. We’ve also added the juice to baked goods and homemade popsicles!

To juice passion fruit, we scoop the pulp into a fine mesh strainer perched over a bowl, and use a rubber spatula to repetitively stir and mash the pulp – pushing the juice down through the strainer into the bowl below. Some folks use the juice to make preserves such as jelly, syrup, or curd! The juice can also be frozen. I plan to play around with passion fruit in the kitchen more this winter, so stay tuned for new recipe ideas!


A close up image is shown of a breakfast bowl that contains four evenly spaced sections of passion fruit pulp, pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, and granola. There is a halved passion fruit in the middle of the bowl, containing more golden pulp within.


Now, excuse me while I go make breakfast.


I hope you found this article useful, interesting, and inspiring. What do you think? Are you going to plant some Passiflora this year? They’re absolutely worth the effort, as the fruit costs a small fortune in the stores! Please feel free to ask questions or leave feedback in the comments, and spread the love by sharing this article.



DeannaCat's signature, keep on growing

25 Comments

  • Jan Bregman

    My passionfruit is full of fruit that is starting to ripen. I have had about a dozen ripen and fall off in the past couple weeks. The problem is that a raccoon seems to have discovered it and is picking off all the fruit before it can ripen. I wake up to open, green passionfruit hulls. I tried spraying a mixture of cayenne pepper and garlic the other night but it does not appear to have deterred them. Do you have any other recommendations? The trellis is about 5 feet high and 6 feet long so it is not possible to cover the entire thing.

    I love your blog and read it often for information. It is so inspiring!

    • Aaron (Mr. DeannaCat)

      Hi Jan, I think you are on the right track with the pepper and garlic mixture but I believe it takes a number of applications to work. You could also mix it into a thicker slurry that you spread around your vine instead of spraying it. If all else fails, hopefully your vine will get big enough and produce enough for you and the raccoon. Thanks for reading and good luck!

    • Gregory Jones

      Your Garden Is Very Beautiful! Where Can I Order The Frederick Variety Of Passionfruit,And When Is The Best Time To Plant It,Spring? I Live In Houston.

      • Aaron (Mr. DeannaCat)

        Hello Gregory, we always get our Fredrick passionfruit from a local nursery and the vines come in a 5 gallon pot. I believe that there are various sites online that will ship vines to you if you can’t find them locally. As far as planting goes in Houston, I would plant the vines in fall or winter and let them get acclimated before the summer heat kicks in. Hope that helps, good luck!

      • Audrey

        Wow, such an informative post! Thank you!! We bought our house in San Diego five years ago and love watching our Passion Flower tree bloom year after year. The purple flowers are really incredible. I didn’t realize that it’s actually a Maypop! It’s producing fruit for the first time … we just noticed it today actually. Excited to try our passion fruit once it falls or is super wrinkly! We love all of the caterpillars and have over a dozen butterflies in our yard at all times. It’s so cool to watch the caterpillars choose a spot in our yard and then watch the chrysalis process in the days to follow. When pruning, I literally inspect each branch and check for caterpillars that need to be “rehomed” on the vine. 🙂 Love everything about these plants!

  • nyrene

    hi there! would you be kind enough to help us out with our passion fruit vine. we have 1 planted but the fruit it produced has nothing on it/empty fruit. so we decided to buy another 1 and planted it, thinking it needed another to help pollinate it. btw, we are from florida. any help is much appreciated. i follow you in instagram. thank you!

    • DeannaCat

      Hy Nyrene! They don’t always need a partner for cross-pollination, but it could vary depending on your variety. If the problem is lack of pollination, maybe the bees aren’t getting to it? Do you have other bee-attracting flowers in your yard? Also, did you see my article on hand-pollinating passion fruit? Finally – if the vine is young, I have a feeling it is just that – young! I bet this year the fruit will be better! Good luck!

  • Lilia

    Your blog had come in handy all week for various reasons! Thank you!

    Picked up my first passiflora edulis yesterday. I’m a little scared but local gardeners say it will do well in my 8a zone. Just saw you are replacing the one by your Greenhouse – can’t wait to follow along on IG! 💜

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