Passiflora caerulea 'Constance Eliott'
Great for the cottage garden, and a really lavish sight left to cover a tall brick wall
- Position: full sun or partial shade
- Soil: moderately fertile, moist, well-drained soil
- Rate of growth: fast-growing
- Flowering period: July to September
- Hardiness: frost hardy (needs winter protection in cold areas)
A really exotic-looking plant, with unusual, fragrant, large white flowers with pale blue or white spiky filaments from July to September, followed by egg-shaped, orange-yellow fruit. The leaves are pretty, too, deeply lobed, dark green and glossy. This elegant white passion flower is a vigorous, trouble-free climber that thrives in hot summers and will quickly cover a sunny wall or fence. Ideal for a tropical planting scheme, it grows best at the base of a sheltered wall in full sun, although it will tolerate some shade. The fruit are edible when fully ripe, but not very tasty!
Passion flowers are believed to represent the suffering of Christ on the cross and the mysteries of the Passion. The 17th century monastic scholar, Jacomo Bosio, describes 'the column rising in the centre of the flower surrounded by the thorn of crowns (and) the three nails at the top of the column. In between, near the base of the column is a yellow colour about the size of a reale, in which there are five spots or stains (stamens) of the hue of blood evidently setting forth five wounds received by our Lord on the cross.'
- Garden care: Choose three to five of the strongest shoots, tying them in to horizontal wires. Once the plant is established, cut back the flowered shoots immediately after flowering to within two or three buds of the permanent framework of the plant. In spring remove dead, misplaced or overcrowded stems.
- Harmful if eaten
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Q:Problems with my Passionfruit clmber after cutting back, and an Acer that I moved?
Hi Crocus I've recently had my garden designed and am very pleased with the results, (plus many good Crocus plants). Unfortunately, my gardener had to cut back my Passionfruit climber which is about 7 years old. Whilst the other climbers (Honeysuckle / Jasmine) are starting to bud and grow back the Passionflower doesn't seem to be, - is there anything I can do to encourage growth? Also I have an Acer, (about 5 years old), which was frazzled by the sun last summer when I moved it from it's semi-shaded pot, into the ground in more sun. Now there are only a couple of buds that are appearing on the ends of some of the old stems, - should I cut back the ones that don't appear to be shooting, or again is there something I can do to encourage growth? Thanks VickieAsked on 12/4/2010 by Vickie Kirk
A:Hello Vickie, Passionfruits often don't recover from being cut back really hard, but the only thing you can do now is wait and see if it rallies around. I would be reluctant to feed it or try to push it, but do make sure it is watered when the soil gets reasonably dry. If however there are still no signs of growth by early June, then I doubt it will come good, so it may need to be replaced. As for the Acer, I would be patient and see if it does start the shoot from the other branches, but again by early June you will be able to see clearly if certain stems are dead and if they need to be cut out. Same rules apply here as to feeding and watering. I hope this helps. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 12/4/2010 by Crocus Helpdesk
Q:Passiflora not flowering
Hello, We have a Passion Flower climber that we have had approx 3 years, it has grown quite well but as yet it has not produced any flowers. We pruned it right back last year but still no flowers, please can you give us some advice? ThanksAsked on 2/1/2010 by Helen Williams
A:Hello There, There are a number of reasons why plants don't flower including too much shade, not enough water or nutrients, or pruning at the wrong time of the year. It can also be caused by the plant putting on new root growth instead of focusing its energies on producing flowers. I am not really sure why yours has not produced buds, but you can often give them a bit of a push by feeding with a high potash fertiliser. I hope this helps, Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 5/1/2010 by Crocus Helpdesk
I am a little worried about my passion flower. The leaves are really yellow - mainly between the veins and now it is developing brown spots. Do you know what may be causing this? Many thanks JulietAsked on 23/6/2009 by Anonymous
A:Hello Juliet, It sounds as though your plant is suffering from a magnesium deficiency. Magnesium is easily leached from the soil after heavy rain. Deficiencies can also be caused by using too much potash (which is used to encourage flowers to form), or if the plants are grown in acidic soils. I would advise that you spray it with Epsom Salts as a foliar spray, diluted at a rate of 200g per 10 litres of water with a few drops of washing up liquid added in. You will probably need to repeat this several times at weekly intervals before the plant starts to recover. Helen Plant DoctorAnswered on 24/6/2009 by Crocus Helpdesk
Q:Passion Flower - Passiflora caerulea
I am looking to place an order with you for a Passion Flower -Passiflora caerulea. If I order now, is it too late to plant?Asked on 16/8/2005 by Brad Hall
A:Passiflora caerulea is frost hardy, so can be planted now if you have a sheltered garden with soil that does not remain heavy and waterlogged in winter. If you live in a colder part of the country, you can pot it on into a larger container and move it to a sheltered spot during the worst of the winter weather.Answered on 16/8/2005 by Crocus
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