At first I thought we had volunteer cow peas popping up in the garden, until a gardening friend who was visiting early spring said, "Those look like purple Passion Flower vines." Well, sure enough, she was right! I should have realized it was Passion flower too because the seedlings popped up (hence the nickname Maypop) nearby where we had grown a plant in a whiskey barrel last year. What a nice surprise!
Passion flowers yield edible fruits. I remember making passion fruit sorbet when I worked at The White Dog Cafe; the flavor was well liked. Growing passion fruit would be a first for us since we've never had luck in the past growing plants from seedlings. Last years plant was started from seed and viola! This year the vines are everywhere.
We decided to let a few vines stay in the raised bed that Mom built. The vigorous vines have climbed to the very top of our tallest tomato supports already. Sunlight still trickles through to our sauce tomatoes below: San Marzano and Goldman's. Will we regret this?
Passion vines can grow to 20 feet. Ours are traveling along the garden fence with some plants growing alongside the tomatoes. They are casting some shade above the tomatoes; but, for now, we're letting them grow out of curiosity of the flowers and to see if they bear any fruit.
The purple, artistic, blooms and spiral tendrils sure add interest and beautiful color to the garden. Stay tuned for updates and Passion Fruit nutrition data.
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