Passiflora foetida seeds, stinky-passionflower
Passiflora foetida belongs to the family of the Passifloraceae. It is native to South America,
but meanwhile it is distributed in the tropical areas all over the world. In some countries it is
seen as an invasive species. P. foetida is also known as the stinking passion flower. This is
due to the fact that some people say that it does not smell very good when one rubs the leaves
of P. foetida between the fingers. Other people like the odor and say that it is similar to the
smell of cucumber and tough very pleasant.
P. foetida is a climbing plant that can get up to 5 m high. All parts of the plant are pubescent
so that it feels quite fluffy if one touches the plant.
The leaves are lobate consisting of 3 or 5 lobes. They can get 15 cm long. In the Vietnamese
medicine the leaves are used dried as tea against sleeping problems.
The flowers are white or creamy and reach 3 to 5 cm in diameter. The center of the flower is
white, pink or red. P. foetida is self fertile. The fruit is yellow, round and reaches 2 to 3 cm in
diameter. The fruits can be eaten when they are ripe, the unripe ones are poisonous. All in all
one should be careful with the fruits of the various Passiflora variations. In the pulp there are
the black seeds of P. foetida. The fruits are eaten by birds and so the seeds get distributed.
Cultivation from seeds
The seeds of Passiflora foetida should be put in warm water for 24 to 48 h before planting. After that
the seeds can be put 0, 5 cm deep into the substrate. When the substrate is constantly moist
and the temperature is at about 25°C then germination occurs after 2 to 4 weeks.
P. foetida can be put outside during summer, but it is not winter hardy and should be indoors
during winter. A temperature of about 10°C is best during the winter time.