This species is best known for its edible 'passion fruit' -- the 'maracujas.' It grows in the tropical regions of several continents, with numerous species and cultivars. In Europe it is not always winter hardy and we consider it here as an annual plant. The blue passionflower Passiflora cerulean described here lasts several years and is therefore the variety that interests us for the greening of façades and walls.
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Latin: Passiflora caerulea
A passion flower should be planted in a sunny wind-protected location. It needs frequent watering and well-drained soil, enriched with compost, sand, and peat; fertilisation is beneficial. In warmer climates this passiflora may last several years, but it needs to be mulched in winter with leaves, needles or straw. When planted in a pot, the passion flower can be wintered in a light and cool room at 5° to 10° C in moist earth. The white flowering cultivar "Constance Elliott" from England is frost hardier than the blue cultivar.
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The passion flower is a twining vine originally from Argentina, Brasil and Peru. The dark, beautiful leaves can be evergreen in some climates. Planted in the ground it can reach 7 - 12 metres in height. The spectacular flowers on the younger shoots come in white, red, or lilac from May to September (or even later after very cold winters... so, July - October). The flowers are open only by day. The Spanish priests compared the shape of the flowers with Christ's martyrdom: 10 petals as 10 Apostles, the stamen ring as the crown of thorns, 5 filaments as 5 wounds, and the 3 stigmas as the nails (2 for hands, 1 for feet). The fruit of passiflora caerula are the size of a chicken egg but not edible. Heavy pruning is necessary in early spring.
Blue passion flower needs small trellises with 25 - 35 cm grid spacing; vertical wires should dominate (think rectangles instead of squares). See the table of suitable designs below. The 5050 with steel rods is a good choice. Choose among the easy (basic/basic-s), light or medium construction styles.