Common name: Passion fruit, Edible Passion Flower, Passion flower, Purple granadilla
Botanical name: Passiflora edulis Family: Passifloraceae (passion flower family)
The passion fruit is a vigorous, climbing vine that clings by tendrils to
almost any support. It can grow 15 to 20 ft. per year once established and
must have strong support. It is generally short-lived (5 to 7 years). The
evergreen leaves of passion fruit are alternate, deeply 3-lobed when mature
and finely toothed. They are 3 to 8 inches long, deep green and glossy above,
paler and dull beneath and, like the young stems and tendrils, tinged with red
or purple, specially in the yellow form. A single, fragrant flower, 2 to 3
inches wide, is born at each node on the new growth. The bloom, clasped by 3
large, green, lifelike bracts, consists of 5 greenish-white sepals, 5 white
petals and a fringelike corona of straight, white-tipped rays, rich purple at
the base. It also has 5 stamens with large anthers, the ovary and
triple-branched style forming a prominent central structure.
The passion fruit is round to oval, yellow or
dark purple at maturity, with a soft to firm, juicy interior filled with
numerous seeds. The fruit can be grown to eat or for its juice, which is often
added to other fruit juices to enhance aroma.
The unique flavor is appealing, musky, guava-like and sweet/tart to tart.
Passion fruit is cultivated commercially for its fruit in
northwestern South America, India, the Caribbean, Brazil, southern Florida,
Hawaii, Australia, East Africa, Israel and South Africa.
|Photographed in Ukhrul, Manipur.|