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Passion Flower
Passifloraceae
Passiflora incarnate


Thunder
Thunder
Flower Petal # 7+
Main Color    
Color 2    
Type Categories Useful Parts

Vine




Passifloraceae Family

Passiflora Genus
Other Names for this Plant

Maypops, Passionsblume, Passion Vine, Passiflore rouge, Maracuja, passionflower, carkifelek, charkhi felek, maypop passionflower, saa't gulu, ward assa'ah, zahril aalaam, granadilla, passionvine, maracoc, apricot-vine


Location

The plant is native to North, Central, and South America. Ranging from Virginia and Kentucky, south to Florida and Texas.

Physical Description
Passion Flower is a woody vine with twinning tendrils along a trailing stem climbing up to 30 feet long. The leaves are 3 to 5 inches broad, short petioled, deeply divided into 3 to 5 large lobes, each tapering to a sharp point, with finely serrated edges.
The beautifully intricate purple and white fringed, sweet-scented flowers are from 2 to 3 inches across. Flowers bloom from June to August. The passion fruit, when ripe is yellow-green and the size of a small hen's egg. The yellow pulp is sweet and edible.



Compare Species
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Passifloraceae
Malpighiales
Malpighi Order
Oxid Clad
Oxid-Faba
Fabidae
Bean-Like Class
Eurosids
Real Rose Class
Rosids
Rosids
Rose-Like Class
Core Eudicots
Core Eudicots
Main, Real, Two First-Leaves (Dicots)
Eudicots
Eudicots
Real, Two First-Leaves (Dicots)
Mesangiospermae
Mesangiospermae
Half Capsule Seed Division
Magnoliophyta
Magnoliophyta
Magnolia Division
Spermatophytes
Spermatophytes
Seed Plants
Euphyllophytina
Real Land Plants
Polysporangiates
Multiple Spore Sub-Kingdom
Stomatophytes
Stomatophytes
Air Pores Sub-Kingdom
Embryophytes
Embryophytes
Multicellular Land Plants
Streptobionta
Streptobionta
Multicellular Plants
Plantae
Plantae
Plants
Eukaryota
Eukaryota
Cells with a Nucleus


General Information

Passionflower has been used by Native Americans for centuries, the Cherokee valued it for its healing properties and as food, using the herb for religious ceremonies. The fruit, flowers and leaves were fermented to make a social drink. Delicious edible it is high in niacin and flavonoids, the fruit and flowers can be eaten raw or cooked in jellies, jams, young leaves are used as a cooked vegetable or eaten in salads.
The historical use of passion flower is not dissimilar to its current use as a mild sedative. Medicinal use of the herb did not begin until the late 19th century in the United States. Passion flower was used to treat nervous restlessness and gastrointestinal spasms. In short, the effects of passion flower were believed to be primarily on the nervous system, particularly for anxiety due to mental worry and overwork.
Medicinal Uses: Passionflower is used in the treatment of insomnia, nervous tension, irritability, neuralgia, irritable bowel syndrome, premenstrual tension and vaginal discharges. An infusion of the plant depresses the motor nerves of the spinal cord, making it very valuable in the treatment of back pain. The infusion is also sedative, slightly reduces blood pressure and increases respiratory rate.
The herb contains alkaloids and flavonoids that are an effective non-addictive sedative that does not cause drowsiness. It is of great value in epilepsy. The dried herb is much exported from America to Europe for medicinal usage.
Food Uses: The yellow, gelatinous pulp inside the fruit is eaten out of hand, as well as mixed with water and sugar to make drinks, sherbet, jams and jellies, and even salad dressings.
Other Notes: Passionflower was first "discovered" in Peru by a Spanish doctor named Monardes in 1569 who documented the indigenous uses and took it back to the Old World where it quickly became a favorite calming and sedative herb tea. Spanish conquerors of Mexico and South America also learned its use from the Aztec Indians and it eventually became widely cultivated in Europe. Since its introduction into European herbal medicine systems, passionflower has been widely used as a sedative, antispasmodic and nerve tonic. The leaf infusion was introduced in North American medicine in the mid 1800's as a sedative through native and slave use in the South. It was also used for headaches, bruises and general pain; applying the bruised leaves topically to the affected area. In many countries in Europe, the U.S. and Canada, the use of passionflower leaves to tranquilize and settle edgy nerves has been documented for over 200 years. It was also employed for colic, diarrhea, dysentery, menstrual difficulties, insomnia, neuralgia, eye disorders, epilepsy and convulsions, and muscle spasms and pain
In Legend: The fascinating Passion Flower ("Passiflora") became known to the West around A.D. 1610, when an Augustinian friar named Emmanuel de Villegas visited Rome from Mexico, bringing drawings to Jacomo Bosio, a monk who was writing a treatise on Christ's Passion. Bosio looked at the drawings, but was tentative about including mention or drawings of them in his narrative as they looked so strange he figured the drawings given to him must be exaggerated. But more drawings came, and visiting Mexican Jesuits assured him that the flowers were quite real.
In the flower's three bracts, he saw a symbol of the Trinity; it its corona filaments, he saw the Crown of Thorns, and in its stigma, the three nails and the column at which Christ was scourged. He described the stamens as "five spots or stains of the hue of blood evidently setting forth five wounds received by our Lord on the Cross." The leaves of the plant are shaped like St. Longinus's spear, and their undersides bear round spots signifying the 30 pieces of silver for which Christ was betrayed by Judas.
The flowers he saw opened for one day, and then closed back up into their bell-like shapes. This, he postulated, could be so because "in His infinite wisdom it pleases Him to create it thus, shut up and protected, as though to indicate that the wonderful mysteries of the Cross and of His Passion were to remain hidden from the heathen people of these countries until the time preordained by His highest Majesty."




Passion Flower




Passion Flower


Comment: Passion Flower, Passiflora incarnate

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