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Maypop (Passiflora incarnata) Thread

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Triloba Tracker:
Well, since becoming totally smitten by passionfruit while in Taiwan last October, I became dead-set on growing Passiflora incarnata.

It also helps that it's the official wildflower of my home state, Tennessee.

So I ordered 2 plants from Logee's - one white variety and one purple, so that I could save on shipping costs versus trying to get 2 genetically different plants from 2 different nurseries.

The white maypop arrived about half the height of the purple, and it had 2 main shoots versus 1 on the purple. The purple tripled in height over the course of a few weeks, but the white one barely grew a couple inches (in the same conditions).

Logee's is subsequently sending me a replacement - not holding my breath. My backup plan is to dig up a wild plant as soon as I can find one.

I constructed a trellis based on recommendations in my post "Passionfruit Trellis Ideas." It consists of 2 metal posts about 6-7 feet apart and galvanized wires running across, one at about 2 feet from the ground, and the second at about 4 feet.

I did not want the vines to spread all over my yard, so I dug 2 holes about 12 inches in diameter and 10-12 inches deep. I got 2 plastic straight-sided grower pots, cut the bottoms out, and put them in the holes with hopes that it would contain the runners.

I tried to just backfill with native soil, but it was difficult to work with - pretty heavy clay. So I found a decomposed tree that had disintegrated into peat moss-like loose compost, mixed with actual compost of my own, and maybe some other junk, and planted the vines in that.

Within a day or 2, something had nibbled the topmost leaves off the white maypop. And just this morning I discovered that something had rooted around quite aggressively and essentially destroyed the white vine. So good thing Logee's is sending me a replacement anyway!

My next step is to decide the best way to protect the plants. Thinking of hardware cloth or chicken wire on the ground around them to prevent digging, and/or a chicken wire fence around the entire area.

I've trapped 3 possums in a week so far...thinking they will be having a field day on any fruit I am able to get.

Any and all advice is welcome!

I haven't checked out their website to see what the species are that you ordered but I don't think they are P. incarnata nor are they winter hardy.

I grow both P. edulis and P. incarnata in my garden (zone 7b Raleigh NC).  Edulis are the purple fruited type and they are kept in pots and moved into the greenhouse for the winter. After 3 years they are finally large enough to fruit which they have this spring for the first time ever. The incarnatas were originally planted in one spot but they now have taken over the yard and pop up in just about every environment. I only weed them out of flowerbeds where they will pose a problem because I like having them around.

There are wild incarnatas (Maypops) in the woods around the house but I have never found fruit on them. The one I grow came from seed I collected in the wild in Arkansas at a highway rest area. I noticed the vines were short (maybe 6 feet) and had been covered with fruit (maybe a dozen on each vine). The ones growing in my garden are still somewhat short for a passionvine and produce more than enough fruit for me to eat. The fruit only has that intense tropical flavor if it is dead ripe and falls off the plant. The seeds have to be black and the outside wrinkly otherwise it has no flavor.

Even when people visit from South America and they are touring my garden, they agree that the fruit of these vines taste very similar to the purple fruited ones back home.

I love these plants but most folks think the fruit looks too much like frog's eggs to eat it. Those that I can convince to taste it love it also.

I'm not sure how long it will take the purple ones to ripen but I am definitely moving them up to larger pots in hopes that it will mean more fruit.

Triloba Tracker:
Interesting that you're growing edulis! I'm not sure I have enough room in the house to overwinter any more plants, so I plan to stick with incarnata for now.

Here is the link to the plants I ordered from Logees. Should be the right thing

I have found very quickly that rabbits love these things. I knew I should've done it sooner but i just now put a chicken wire cylinder around the vine. Rabbits nearly sheared the thing in half. I put a splint made from toothpicks on the stem to see if it will grow back together. So far it appears that it may be working.

My replacement white maypop is scheduled to arrive today.

Now my concern is protecting ripe fruit from possums, of which I have plenty. I may have to build a cage around the entire thing.

TriangleJohn - how do you protect your passionfruits from varmints?

I also plan to look for wild vines to potentially transplant. Friend told me he successfully did so as a kid. I actually haven't seen many of these in the wild but haven't looked too hard either. One vine in our church parking lot actually set 3-4 fruit last summer but didn't get to taste them. They may not have ripened properly either.

I have seen some good producing incarnatas in the brush in Rutherford county but that was years ago. Don shadow has some at Shadow nursery , in Winchester, that are quite prolific. He has a bunch planted right at the entrance, very beautiful flowers.

Triloba Tracker:

--- Quote from: Bob407 on May 12, 2015, 10:13:07 AM ---I have seen some good producing incarnatas in the brush in Rutherford county but that was years ago. Don shadow has some at Shadow nursery , in Winchester, that are quite prolific. He has a bunch planted right at the entrance, very beautiful flowers.

--- End quote ---
I'm from Winchester...I need to get down and pay ol' Don a visit!


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